Posts tagged "UTM"

Terra Drone Corporation have developed UTM’s new function based on Terra UTM, in regards to the technical verification of “Drone Highway Initiative.” * 1 Tokyo Electronic Ventures (TEPCO Ventures)* 2 and Zenrin Co., Ltd. are promoting.

In March 2018, in cooperation with the TEPCO group, Terra Drone carried out Automatic drone flight utilizing simulated data assuming acquisition from meteorological observation equipment attached to the power transmission facility.


 (1) A linkage between meteorological observation data and Terra UTM.

Terra Drone and TEPCO Ventures linked processing data acquired from meteorological observation instrument attached to the power transmission tower to Terra UTM.

(2) Drone flight utilizing meteorological observation data

When Terra UTM recognizes data of strong wind which is beyond a previously determined threshold acquired from weather observation instrument(we preset threshold), Terra UTM automatically takes the drones to the prescribed evacuation area.


Results of demonstration

According to the success of the demonstration, the critical essence of the “Drone Highway Concept” to improve the safety of airspace where drones fly by various sensors attached to TEPCO’s power transmission tower is useful. Besides, the practical utility of Terra UTM as the platform for the concept and its extensibility is also proven.

By providing Terra UTM as the platform for various projects including the “Drone highway concept,” Terra Drone and TEPCO Ventures continue to contribute to the safe and secure drone flight, and eventually, realize the “Revolution in the Sky.”


* 1 Toward the realization of “Drone Highway concept”

* 2 TEPCO Ventures Co., Ltd. is a wholly owned subsidiary of TEPCO Holdings Co., Ltd. established in May 2018 and succeeded to the drone highway Initiative. TEPCO Ventures Website:

Left to right: Koen Meuleman, CFO of Unifly and Alex Wang Yufeng, President of Huawei Wireless X Labs

Shenzhen, China – June 11th, 2018 – Huawei Technologies Co., Ltd and Unifly N.V have signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) to cooperate in the field of Unmanned Traffic Management (UTM) systems. The MoU covers both research and development, and a joint market approach to Unmanned Aircraft Systems (UAS, or drone) management.

The global market for UAS is growing rapidly as drones become established in diverse vertical markets such as agriculture, oil and gas, and logistics. According to SPO Lab, a business research organization inside Huawei, the global UAS market opportunity is estimated to exceed USD100B over the next five years as thousands of drones take to the skies.

As the number of drones occupying the airspace above our cities and towns dramatically increases, a key concern for national Civil Aviation Authorities (CAA) and Air Navigation Service Providers (ANSPs) is how this disruptive technology can be permitted to flourish within a managed environment. Registration, insurance, air worthiness and certification are top of mind for national agencies – as is allaying public concerns regarding safety and privacy. New solutions are required, as the existing methodology for airspace management neither scopes nor scales to address these concerns. ANSPs are looking to technology and communication providers for innovative and assured solutions to meet this challenge.

Huawei has developed a technology to identify and locate drone users based on the operator’s SIM card. Huawei’s technology combined with Unifly’s Unmanned Traffic Management (UTM) platform enables ANSPs to integrate drones into the airspace safely and securely. Leveraging globally standardized cellular technology to connect official agencies and drone operators, Unifly’s UTM platform makes it possible to not only follow drones in real-time, but also to determine who is flying, where they are flying and whether they are permitted to be in that airspace. Aligned with initiatives such as U-space, which supports the EU’s aviation strategy and regulatory framework to enable dense drone air traffic, Unifly’s platform also includes key digital technologies for flight planning, airspace management, live tracking and dynamic situational awareness.

 “4.5G and 5G technology play a key role in the registration and identification of drones and drone users as well as the tracking of drones in the airspace; essential services in a UTM architecture. We are delighted to collaborate with Unifly to address the challenges of mass market connected drone deployment”: commented Peter Zhou, Chief Marketing Officer of Huawei Wireless Networks

Marc Kegelaers, CEO of Unifly said: “I am very excited to announce our partnership with Huawei. Huawei is a world leader in wireless technology and Unifly is a world leader in unmanned traffic management. Now both parties have agreed to join forces to create a comprehensive, end-to-end solution for the UTM market, I am convinced we will see the next step in drone integration into the general airspace very soon.

About Huawei X Labs

Huawei X Labs is a research platform connecting operators, vertical industry partners and industry leaders to jointly explore future use cases for mobile applications, drive innovation in business and technology, and promote an open industry ecosystem.

About Unifly

Unifly is an award-winning, leading provider of Unmanned Traffic Management technology.

The Unifly UTM platform is already in use by the national Air Navigation Service Providers in four European countries to integrate drone traffic safely in the national airspace. In Europe, Unifly contributes to major SESAR research programs to define, develop and test the U-space concept. In the USA, Unifly is building an organization to deploy and support the UTM software in support of local initiatives, such as the UAS Integration Pilot Programs. Furthermore, Unifly has set up regional Value Resellers in the APAC region, the Middle East and Africa and is active in humanitarian drone research for UNICEF. Unifly actively promotes and contributes to international cooperation initiatives through the Global UTM Association (GUTMA), of which Unifly’s CEO Marc Kegelaers is the Vice-president.

Michael Scheibenreif demonstrating a drone. @UNICEF/Malawi/ 2017/ CMauluka

At AUVSI Xponential in Denver, drones are everywhere. The global community of commercial and military leaders meet up yearly to discover and share the latest in robotics, drones and unmanned systems. This year’s edition focuses on the unmanned economy, lifestyle and the use of drones for humanitarian purposes.

Marc Coen, CCO of Unifly, presents Unifly’s work in UNICEF’s humanitarian drone corridor in Malawi.

Drones are a hot topic and their applications are seemingly endless. Especially in harsh environments, drones can be a lifesaving tool. Drones can help save lives, not only during a sudden disaster, but for daily humanitarian purposes and medical supply chains.

With drones, even the remotest regions can receive lifesaving materials in a matter of minutes or hours.

Unicef’s Humanitarian Drone Testing Corridor was opened in Malawi in June 2017. It is specifically dedicated to the humanitarian and development uses for drones.

The first of its kind in Africa, the corridor serves as a dedicated unmanned flight testing space and allows for Beyond Visual Line of Sight (BVLOS) testing in a territory over 5000 km² and up to 400 meters above ground level.

The corridor has a 40km radius (80km diameter) and is centered on Kasungu Aerodrome (with a runway length of about 1200m) in central Malawi, about an hour and a half drive from the capital city of Lilongwe. Kasungu is home to a district hospital and a variety of rural health clinics in remote areas, enabling the testing of real humanitarian use cases such as the transport of vaccines, medical supplies or blood samples.
Marc Coen, Chief Commercial Officer of Unifly, was in Malawi to set up the first Unmanned Traffic Management system in Africa in November 2017.

Marc Coen travelled to Malawi to set up the UTM system. He explains: “Unifly provides the Unmanned Traffic Management system to ensure safe testing in the drone corridor. In this project, our software platform connects with uAvionix trackers to follow the drones in real-time.

The first test of the UTM System was in November 2017, during a fully autonomous, simulated blood sample delivery flight. The flight testing explored drone applications in emergency medical supply delivery, vaccines and sample delivery for diagnosis, and remote sensing. Drones can carry lifesaving materials, in places where developed transportation networks do not exist.

A small community located 17 km from the aerodrome was chosen because of the health centre located there and the bad road connection to Kasungu. After one aborted test flight, the second try proved to be a perfect, fully autonomous flight to Kasungu airport. The flight took some 16 minutes and covered an actual distance of 19 km – find more information on the flights here.

For us, the biggest challenge was the infrastructure, or lack thereof. Electricity and internet were intermittent, we also experienced some practical issues. The first time we set up a successful UTM system was back in November. However due to technical issues with the tracker, we were not able to follow the drone at that time.

In November, the secondary goal of the test flight was for Virginia Tech to coach students and faculty from Malawian universities how to construct the aircraft so it can be fabricated and operated locally in Malawi for remote medicine delivery and remote sensing purposes.  The drones are made of foam core (poster board) and 3D printed parts to facilitate local production and keep costs low.

At the second UTM test earlier this month, Swedish FlyPulse and Globhe sent out a drone that combines transport with aerial photography. The goal was once again to deliver medical supplies to areas that are hard to reach, with another secondary goal to the mission. Their drone can capture and interpret aerial imaging. This way important information is made available, such as the quality of the roads, the number of houses in each area and the effects of possible natural disasters such as flooding. This drone flight was a lot longer as well, at 66km. For us, the second attempt was more successful because we could follow the drone’s movements on our screen in real-time.

We believe it is very important to build an ecosystem of drone experts locally to ensure that these solutions are sustainable and embedded within the communities it services.”

Juan Jiménez, Director UAS Business Development at uAvionix, says: “As a safety-focused company, the life-saving potential of unmanned systems has always appealed to us. uAvionix is proud to participate in humanitarian efforts such as this one with UNICEF and Unifly. Even in areas with sparse infrastructure, ADS-B can be used both as a surveillance and DAA aid to BVLOS applications.”

Marc Kegelaers, CEO of Unifly, says ” It has been a pleasure to work with uAvionix in setting up the UTM system for the Malawi Drone Corridor. As a world leader in UTM software technology, Unifly seeks to establish world-wide partnerships with the leaders in their field to build comprehensive UTM systems. The cooperation between uAvionix and Unifly is a perfect example of what can be achieved when complementary companies join forces to create an all-encompassing solution.”

About the drone corridor
The Malawi drone test corridor is open to industry, universities, and individuals who can apply and test a potential use case in one of the three main areas as defined below. The drone corridor in Malawi is an opportunity for companies to provide global leadership in the emerging technology field of drones for humanitarian and development work, while simultaneously developing local experience in Malawi.
The corridor will facilitate testing in three main areas:

  1. Imagery – generating and analyzing aerial images for development and during humanitarian crises, including for situation monitoring in floods and earthquakes;
  2. Connectivity – exploring the possibility for UAVs to extend Wi-Fi or cell phone signals across difficult terrain, particularly in emergencies;
  3. Transport – delivery of small low weight supplies such as emergency medical supplies, vaccines and samples for laboratory diagnosis, including for HIV testing.

The corridor is designed to provide a controlled platform for the private sector, universities, and other partners to explore how drones can be used in scenarios that will benefit marginalized communities. All data generated by the flights will be used to inform the Government of Malawi’s plans for the use of drones in multiple scenarios. This is particularly important due to frequent flooding in some areas of Malawi and challenges in transport infrastructure.

For more information, read Unicef’s article here.

For more information, contact Ellen Malfliet, Marketing & Communications Manager of Unifly
+32 471 62 91 92,

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After 6 months of being the preferred UAS Service Supplier of digital airspace authorization in U.S. controlled airspace, we know what LAANC means for your drone business: access, safety, growth, and a future for the drone industry.

That’s why we’re thrilled to report that the FAA has officially announced the nationwide expansion of the LAANC program. Beginning in April, digital airspace authorization will be rolled out to nearly 300 air traffic control facilities representing approximately 500 airports across the United States, opening up to 78,000 miles of airspace for commercial drone operations.

Compared to the manual waiver process, which has 19 steps and takes up to 90 days to process, LAANC authorization to fly in controlled airspace is easy, digital, and available immediately. Authorization requests are submitted with a tap in the AirMap app and approved in seconds.

The expansion will begin in April, with the FAA releasing a new region each month.

  • April 30: South Central USA
  • May 24: Western North USA
  • June 21: Western South USA
  • July 19: Eastern South USA
  • August 16: Eastern North USA
  • September 13: Central North USA

Drone pilots near select airports in Alabama, Arizona, Arkansas, Illinois, Kansas, Louisiana, Mississippi, Missouri, New Mexico, Oklahoma, and Texas will be first to get started with LAANC authorization this spring. If you’re in another location, don’t worry! Your state isn’t far behind. The full rollout is expected to be completed by the fall.

You can request digital airspace authorization from the AirMap app, and from our deep linking partners 3DR, Betterview, Converge, DroneDeploy, and Measure. (To integrate LAANC authorization from AirMap into your application, learn more here and visit to get started.)

For more on the program from the FAA, visit their website here. And to learn how AirMap makes digital airspace authorization available to ANSPs worldwide, visit

Terra Drone Co., Ltd., the leading Japanese commercial drone service company, has commercialized UTM (Unmanned Traffic Management) system for the first time in Korea collaborating with LG U+, a South Korean cellular carrier owned by LG Corporation.

On November 21st, 2017, LG U+ CEO Kwon Young-Soo announced that LG U+ began “U+ Smart Drone UTM System,” which enables a drone to fly safely for disaster monitoring and logistic transport in BVLOS (beyond visual line of sight) and at night.

LG U + is one of Korea’s three major telecommunication companies and has just made a  full-scale entry into the commercial drone business to lead the 5G era. Besides, they demonstrated an autonomous drone of taking off in a remote location carrying out duties at the destination and returning to control center on its own.

◆ Business Details
– Confirm the position of a drone through the UTM system in BVLOS
– Connect to the UTM system via various portable devices such as PC / tablet/mobile
– World’s first real-time viewing of FHD high-quality images taken by Drone through IPTV

■ Autonomous drone successfully found a lost child in three minutes.

In the demonstration of the UTM system, the autonomous drone found a 6-year-old boy wearing a red jacket at Kamiwa Koro Park in Seoul, Korea in three minutes after remotely flying the drone.

“There are no other solutions than a drone to scan a wide area like Uwawa-Kyo Park in such a short time, which is about 20 times of a football stadium.  We believe that the use of the UTM system will greatly contribute to society ” said LG U+ Director of Operations Kwon Yeon Hoon.

A real-time distribution of the missing child sent to the nearby safety personnel via the drone, and it returned safely to the planned route. In the UTM system, conditions of a site can be assessed such as radio wave condition, flight speed of drones, remaining battery amount, weather information – wind direction, wind speed, temperature, etc. It also shows latitude and longitude information of the drone’s flight path.

■ Remotely fly a drone at a distance of hundred kilometers.

LG U+ Smart Drone UTM System enables drone operators to control drones at hundred kilometers away wherever the network is connected. Unlike traditional way, which manually operates drones, just by entering the destination, the entire process from a take-off of the drone to its return can be conducted autonomously.

It is also possible for multiple people to monitor a drone at the same time or one can make a flight plan for multiple drones, which applies to various industrial fields as an efficient drone control system.

■ Optimized various functions

With U+ Smart Drone UTM System, weather information such as humidity, wind direction, wind speed can be checked at any time.

Also, it shows the radio-field intensity and set the flight route to the area where the radio-field strength is high.

As one of the features of U + Smart Drone UTM System, drones autonomously stop flying when it recognizes other drones, aircraft, and birds. In an emergency, drones utilize the parachute equipped to land in a safe area.

The world’s first function is added, which is data taken by a drone can be seen with IPTV in real time with high definition video of full HD level. In the 5 G era, it is possible to transfer data 10 times faster than LTE so that beautiful high-quality images transmitted by a drone can be gained in real time without any delay.

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Woensdrecht, 27 September 2017 – During a live demonstration on Aviolanda Aerospace, two companies from the Netherlands and Belgium joined forces to show that drones can be managed and controlled using a specially developed small transponder combined with Unmanned Traffic Management software.
The new technology was developed by Unifly, Belgian developer of Unmanned Traffic Management software (UTM) and the European distributor of uAvionix, supplier of transponders that make the drones visible.
Who flies where?
The combination of the UTM platform with the trackers also makes it possible to determine who is flying and whether they should be there. Ellen Malfliet of Unifly: “Our technology is in line with the European U-space initiative that allows for more intensive drone traffic and automatic drone operations, and opens the door to a European drone service market.”
Managing laws and regulations
The fully developed UTM platform has a very welcome additional feature on board: it can handle the complex and dynamic European regulations. “Including laws and regulations at national and local level,” says Malfliet. “Authorities can visualize and manage drone flights, and also declare no-drone zones. “Drone operators can register drone pilots and drones, and they can plan and confirm flights proactively to ensure that these flights do not violate national or local rules. “
Dutch Drone Center
Dutch Drone Center, the test, training and demo location on Aviolanda Aerospace for unmanned airplanes, hosted the demo. Rob Nispeling: “The purpose of the demo was to show the airspace regulators and executive services what techniques and interactions are possible to make drones electronically visible to traffic management and other airspace users. It was an absolute success. ”




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Antwerp, September 14th, 2017 – Today Belgian scale-up Unifly opens their next international office in Copenhagen, Denmark. Joining us from the Danish Naviair is Ronni Winkler Østergaard who will be spearheading our expansion into the Nordic as the Regional Manager for Scandinavia and the Baltics.

Unifly specialises in Unmanned Traffic Management (UTM) software. With nearly 20 years of experience in air traffic control, Ronni is an expert in drone integration. The last three years Ronni has been involved in the safe integration of drones, as a drone program manager for Naviair. He also participated in international working groups including the European aviation R&D program SESAR and SESAR 2020.

“One of the reason I decided to join Unifly is that they have the right vision. I see Unifly as one of the key elements in the safe integration of drones in the airspace. ” says Ronni.

“Drones are a new emerging technology in the aviation world. They offer a huge potential for economic growth and innovation, new business models and new services for citizens. The infrastructure needs to be in place to give drones the opportunity to become a disruptive technology that impacts the world in a positive way. This is what Unifly offers and I am excited to be a part of that. My goal is to give drone technology the opportunity to integrate safely into the world of aviation.”

The new office is located at SingularityU, the innovation hub in the heart of Copenhagen Science City. SingularityU is home to social impactors, fast growing startups, corporates innovating on the edges, robots, biohackers, gadget gurus, thought leaders, researchers, futurists, and much, much more.

Unifly strongly invests in growth. With over 20 employees in the company today, by the end of 2018 the Unifly workforce will increase to almost 50. Unifly is looking for extra talent to strengthen the team.

Joining forces to satisfy the growing need for UTM, the companies will leverage Thales’s unparalleled expertise in air traffic management, system integration and cyber security as well as Unifly’s dedicated focus on drone management to provide the premier UTM application. The solution will incorporate Unifly’s Validation Engine, a sophisticated software application that conducts real-time validation of drone flight plans, into Thales ECOsystem, a decision support platform for improved aviation operations.

Leveraging more than 10 years of research and technology innovation, ECOsystem moved from concept to reality to enable ANSPs, airlines and airport operators to plan, monitor, manage and assess aviation operations for better decisions and better results. Through a suite of tools and predictive analytics, stakeholders optimize their operations, as well as contribute to global optimization through data sharing and collaborative applications. Further, ECOsystem is configurable to the customers’ operational requirements, from a global cloud-hosted service, to a local single-facility deployment.

At last year’s World ATM Congress, Thales launched the first application of ECOsystem, Air Traffic Flow Management. This second application, UTM, integrates drone registration, pilot registration, flight planning, and regulatory/business rules with geospatial and meteorological information to enable adaptable workflows for managing drone operations as well as customizable situational awareness using tools such as map overlays, terrain views and 3D projections. The UTM application and data enable automated flight authorizations as well as real-time alerting and intervention in emergency situations. The application will support the rapidly growing demand for UAS operations in both Visual Line of Sight and Beyond Visual Line of Sight while ensuring the public’s safety, security and privacy.

“The number of drones is growing exponentially. Safely integrating such a large number of drones in the airspace is a challenge. This will require a UTM system that provides a high level of automation as well as a seamless integration into the world of ATM.  Thales and Unifly will collaborate to achieve just that.”  Marc Kegelaers, Chief Executive Officer, Unifly

Unifly’s unique validation engine software uses geographically linked data to determine the safety of the intended flight. The Validation Engine is designed to process very large amounts of data. The validation occurs in real-time, both during the flight planning process as well as during the actual flight. Parameters include: position of the drone, airspace, local legislation, no-drone zones, geo-fenced areas, weather, obstacles, roads, as well as other manned and unmanned traffic.

Through working group and industry body participation, Thales and Unifly will team to support the aviation industry as it evolves to safely track and integrate UASs into the manned aviation domain. The companies will collaborate in pursuit of UTM business opportunities around the world.

UTM, or unmanned traffic management, is one of the key enablers of the drone economy. But what is it? How does it work?

Read this interview with AirMap’s Vice President of Product, Matt Koskela, to find out.

Let’s start with the basics. What is UTM?

“UTM” refers to two things. First, UTM stands for “Unmanned Traffic Management” – how we’ll manage the integration of drones into low-altitude airspace.

We’re heading towards a future in which millions of drones fly billions of flights. These drones will need a complex universe of data to map and understand the environment around them – and tools to communicate and deconflict with others in low-altitude airspace. UTM is the infrastructure that will allow a drone to exchange all of this information with other drones, manned aircraft, airspace management services like AirMap, and other stakeholders like airport personnel and air traffic control.

Second, we use the term UTM to refer to efforts to build this infrastructure worldwide, such as the NASA-FAA UTM project. This project is a collaboration between regulators and private industry partners like AirMap that is testing and harmonizing the technologies we’ll need to realize UTM in the United States.

Can we think of UTM as air traffic control for drones?

That’s certainly part of UTM. Today, air traffic management for manned aircraft is a very human, manual process, built to prevent collisions between planes, known as deconfliction. Deconfliction between drones, or between drones and other aircraft, is just one part of UTM.

Because drones fly in low-altitude airspace, they need a much more detailed picture of their world and the obstacles and events within it: powerlines, building heights, microscale weather, and even the times and locations of community gatherings, such as the weekly farmer’s market.

How do we source and share that information? How do we facilitate communication between all of the stakeholders in this airspace? What services will drones need to plan and fly safe routes? Those are the questions UTM seeks to answer. It’s much bigger than air traffic control.

You mentioned that UTM is a public-private collaboration – how does that work?

The UTM project brings the drone community together to determine how low-altitude airspace management should work – by testing technologies, exchanging data and best practices between companies in the drone industry, and developing performance-based standards for UTM. Companies throughout the drone industry are already building solutions to the challenges of UTM, including AirMap. The UTM project creates a forum in which these solutions can be elevated, shared, and integrated into the final framework.

The key to the UTM project is that it harnesses the power of private industry innovation. Ultimately, NASA and the FAA’s vision for UTM is that private companies called UAS Service Suppliers will facilitate low-altitude airspace management. They’ll do this by providing data and services to drones as well as delivering requests and data back from drones to the rest of the national airspace system.

What are some of the solutions AirMap provides for UTM?

Through the AirMap platform, we’re implementing UTM solutions for the drones of today and the drones of tomorrow. For example, the AirMap platform provides data such as airspace requirements and rules, alerts about manned traffic, hyperlocal weather, and locations of critical infrastructure and other obstacles to drones and their operators. And through our D-NAS system, we help drone operators submit digital flight plans to airports to receive authorization to fly. In turn, airports with a D-NAS dashboard can communicate with drone operators that have shared flight notices in the case of an emergency or hazard.

That’s UTM in action.

How is AirMap taking part in the UTM project?

We’re big believers in the UTM project, and we want to make sure the entire ecosystem can benefit from what we’ve learned building UTM services and products. The way we do that is by participating in UTM project activities like the NASA-FAA Research Transition Team (RTT).

In November, for example, AirMap was one of six companies to participate in the first working group of the RTT – a collaborative initiative to test technologies that could be implemented as part of UTM. Along with Amazon, ANRA Technologies, Simulyze, Skycart and Transtrex, we successfully demonstrated how platforms like AirMap could be used to link the national airspace system and individual drones, and facilitate the exchange of information about real-time flying conditions.

What are you hoping AirMap and the UTM project will achieve in 2017?

To start, we’re looking forward to participating in more tests of UTM technologies in 2017. And by the end of the year, I hope that the NASA-FAA UTM project will have coalesced around performance-based standards for how data will be exchanged in the UTM framework – kicking off the next phase of innovation for the drone industry.

AirMap VP of Product Matt Koskela is a private pilot and engineer with a deep background in delivering cloud-based services to high demand customers.

Written by the AirMap AirCrew