Innovation

Airbus unites with EASA and CAAS to better define drone regulations

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Two European and Singaporean aviation regulators have teamed up with Airbus in a bid to strengthen drone restrictions in built-up areas. The European Aviation Safety Agency has signed a collaboration agreement with the Civil Aviation Authority of Singapore (CAAS) and Airbus to establish a "framework for the exchange of information and technical expertise." EASA adds that the partners will be "leveraging Airbus's experience with the ongoing Skyways project." Skyways is a partnership, signed in 2017, between Airbus Helicopters and Singaporean postal service SingPost to trial an unmanned aerial package delivery system in the city state. CAAS director general, Kevin Shum,
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UMS Skeldar ramps up naval power with next generation UAV

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UMS Skeldar, a global pioneer of NATO-compliant rotary vertical take-off and landing (VTOL) UAV solutions, has unveiled its latest innovation in UAV technology. In a bid to create a wider competitive advantage for its flagship unmanned helicopter, the company has announced the launch of the Skeldar V-200B, a comprehensive modification of its mid-sized heavy fuel engine VTOL. The upgraded V-200B boasts enhanced features, including extended endurance, engine management system and payload capabilities. The Skeldar V-200B completed its trials earlier in 2018, following an intensive modification audit, based on in-theatre performance feedback and the strategic imperative to further widen competitive advantage.
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3DR launches industry-first thermal solution for DJI M200 series drones

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3DR, an international drone software specialist, has revealed its latest innovation. The one-of-a-kind Site Scan system was built in collaboration with DJI and FLIR Systems and is designed to support flying autonomously with the DJI M210 dual gimbal drone, equipped with the Zenmuse X4S and the Zenmuse XT thermal camera, powered by FLIR. “Site Scan’s unique ability to generate structurally detailed thermal point clouds is a brand new capability for our customers across engineering, construction, and mining,” said Chris Anderson, CEO of 3DR. “Now, Site Scan users can easily inspect buildings, structures, and utilities, map solar arrays, monitor concrete curing,
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UAV flight raises the bar by breaking altitude and off-shore distance records

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A multinational engineering and consulting firm specialising in aerospace and defence systems has set a new bar for the UAV industry by claiming two new flight records. The TARSIS 75 unmanned, fixed-wing aerial platform from AERTEC Solution, is continuing its testing campaign at the National Institute for Aerospace Technology’s El Arenosillo Testing Centre (CEDEA) in Huelva. The operations marked TARSIS 75’s first flight over 100km. This record, operating from the coast, involved climbing to an altitude of 3,000 metres after taking off from sea level. It was not possible to exceed the 100km distance as this was practically at the
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Texo makes UK drone history with first long-range UHS

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Texo Drone Survey and Inspection (Texo DSI) continuous commitment to pushing the envelope of unmanned aerial vehicle services has gone even further with the addition of long-range VTOL Unmanned Helicopter System (UHS) capability. The company has taken delivery of its first beyond visual line of sight (BVLOS) High Eye HEF 32 Unmanned Helicopter – making it the first in the UK to do so. This addition to its already comprehensive fleets, further underlines and strengthens its position as the world’s premier commercial drone operators. The system is the first to be delivered to a UK operator and will allow Texo
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Leica Geosystems slashes UAV mission time with new solution

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Leica Geosystems has ramped up its UAV capabilities with the launch of a new system designed to make vital time savings. The company has unveiled the new Leica Aibot, based on DJI’s aerial platform, the M600 Pro, to rapidly and autonomously acquire mobile 3D mapping data. Leica Geosystems’ latest innovation in UAV technology is designed to allow users to get a complete data set in less time with a user-friendly and innovative interface, opening new business opportunities while spending less time, costs and effort than with traditional methods. Leica Geosystems' software suite supports the new UAV workflows. Using Leica Infinity
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Elistair takes off with next generation of tethered drone solutions

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French drone specialist Elistair has created a fully automated tethered drone system to target emergency responders. The Orion UAS, a mission-critical tethered system that offers flexibility and a wide application scope, is designed for semi-persistent aerial surveillance and telecommunications needs. Elistair claims the drone system can achieve the ‘most demanding missions for law enforcement’, private and public safety, national security, assets protection or emergency communications and crisis management. The drone system has high-grade industrial motors and multiple redundancies, including autopilot sensors, motorisation, power distribution, logical controls, and an emergency parachute system. Orion UAS is also designed to sustain fierce winds
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Pix4D expands business horizons with new dedicated drone mapping service

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Advanced photogrammetry software firm Pix4D has expanded its operations within the UAV sector with the launch of its first dedicated drone mapping service for agriculture. Equipped with a new fast processing that provides accurate and instant results and an easy-to-use interface with tools tailored to agricultural workflows, it claims to be able to manage everything from simple to complex scenarios. “Our solution fits the needs of the agriculture industry and we believe Pix4Dfields will become a staple tool, just like a meter is for a construction site worker,” Christoph Strecha, Pix4D CEO, stated. The launch follows on from the company
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SAP and Kespry join forces to drive data integration on construction jobsites

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Kespry, one of the leading drone-based aerial intelligence solution providers, has teamed up with a software and technology solutions firm for a new venture. The collaboration between the SAP and Kespry platforms is designed to enable contractors to move towards running an intelligent enterprise. Kespry transforms the historically analogue jobsite into a fully-digitised jobsite that facilitates real-time communication and collaboration using consistent, reliable and highly-accurate surface data. “Kespry is excited to be part of SAP’s intelligence enterprise ecosystem," said George Mathew, CEO and chairman of Kespry. "By leveraging SAP’s Cloud Platform, we are able to deliver aerial intelligence converging with
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Airbus brings drone delivery to one of the world’s busiest ports

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Airbus is flying the flag for drone delivery and has announced plans to conduct UAV operations at one of the world’s busiest ports. The European aeronautical company has teamed up with Wilhelmsen Ships Service, a global maritime industry group, to work on the Agency by Air project in order to launch shore-to-ship drone delivery. Launching at Singapore port’s Marina South Pier in quarter three 2018, Wilhelmsen Ships Service and Airbus will be piloting the delivery of spare parts, documents, water test kits and 3D printed consumables via Airbus’ Skyways UAV to vessels at anchorage. Culminating over a year of planning
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