UV - Unmanned Vehicles

Patroller UAS completes ODREA flight tests

21st November 2014 - 11:30 GMT | by The Shephard News Team

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Sagem’s Patroller UAS has completed a series of flight tests as part of the Single European Sky ATM Research (SESAR) programme and Operational Demonstration of RPAS in European Airspace (ODREA) initiative, the company announced on 20 November.

The test programme is being carried out as part of efforts to demonstrate the feasibility of a UAS being integrated in a shared manned/unmanned aircraft airspace, in compliance with civil aviation regulations and air control procedures.

Around 20 flights were completed using Patroller near Toulouse between 26 October and 7 November. A complete anti-collision function was demonstrated during the flights – a key capability for the integration of UAS into a civilian airspace shared with manned aircraft.

Sagem’s ‘see and avoid’ system - which combine traffic detection sensors, including an EO/IR sensor, and an automatic risk collision estimation and avoidance flight path generation module - was integrated in the Patroller's control system. The system successfully used different conflict scenarios with a ‘dummy’ aircraft provided by ENAC, enabling Patroller to detect the risk of a collision and avoid it, without requiring an operator.

Sagem is teaming up with the French air navigation and safety agency DSNA, the laboratory run by the national civil aviation school ENAC, and Rockwell Collins France for the ODREA project.

The ODREA project also demonstrated Patroller's ability to carry out approaches to the Toulouse-Blagnac airport according to procedures defined by air traffic control (ATC). This demonstration confirms that a drone is capable of operating in the terminal zone of an international airport, without impacting traffic or safety.

The series of demonstration flights, which followed a major simulation validation project by the ODREA consortium, marks a major step forward in demonstrating the state-of-the-art technological solutions for integrating drones in civilian, non-segregated airspace.

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