Uncrewed Flying Objects:
Many hands make flights work
The ability to develop new technology to combat climate change and operate more sustainably in isolation is dwindling, fast. Collaboration is central to expanding the sector.
DATUM – Digital Air Traffic Unification & Management
In November 2022 at the Royal Geographical Society, London, the European Innovation Council-funded UFO Project’s showcase event brought together 25 startups from across the worlds of HAPS, drones and UAVs. To date UFO – which has the strapline Innovation boosted by small flying objects – has invested €3.6m ($3.75m) across the projects, providing an acceleration programme for 66 small businesses.
What Was Discussed?
The project is targeting six sectors:
Mobility, climate, environment, blue growth, creative/gaming and finance/insurance. We are using three types of UAV:
drones, high-altitude platform systems and small satellites to encourage inter-industry collaboration using small flying objects.
Essentially what we are trying to do here is develop a flight tracking application and integrate it into the drone’s mission control
James Dunthorne, CEO, Neuron.
This includes developing a ground-based IoT network with aviation sensors, working out the regulatory framework to glue all of this together and conducting some flight tests with the Dronamics [Black Swan] prototype.
A unique view
Neuron’s prototype system takes the input from multiple IoT sensors and feeds it into the ground control station of the pilot. “Being able to see all of this data on a single map is really important to be able to digitise air traffic management,” said Dunthorne. The technology is now being further tested in a £3.6m project in the UK (project BLUEPRINT). Other use cases like EV charging and climate sensing are also being looked at and Dunthorne says a token will be launched to incentivise IoT sensor deployment.