Avinor Air Navigation Services (ANS) is working with Frequentis and Altitude Angel to implement an unmanned traffic management (UTM) system at 18 airport towers across Norway.
The system, which is being tested in a real-world environment at the first two airport towers, before being rolled out nationwide, will support the countries future drone strategy.
The UTM system provides an operational overview of the airspace and allows two-way communication between air traffic control (ATC) and drone operators, enabling safe drone use.
The UTM project in Norway supports the Norwegian governments drone strategy for the increased safe use of drones, and to tackle the rising number of reported incidents and airspace violations. #
With the UTM solution, Norway’s Air Navigation Service Provider (ANSP), Avinor ANS, has the means to accelerate the safe integration of drones, evolving the commercial use of the technology to generate sustainable revenue streams.
Axel Knutsen, Avinor’s vice president of UTM, said: “To manage the increasing number of requests from drone operators we require a digitalised system to replace as much of the manual operations as possible. The ability to implement real-time no-drone zones, provide geo-awareness, flight approvals, and easy access to drone operator contact information will improve safety for both Avinor ANS and all airspace users.”
Adding: “This phased roll-out of UTM at the first two airports will allow the local drone community to use the applications and provide feedback ahead of a nationwide rollout.”
Frequentis, with partner Altitude Angel, has provided the Common Information Services (CIS) function and includes a foundation of U-space (unmanned airspace) services.
This allows Avinor ANS to open Norwegian airspace to commercial drone use and includes an operator portal including a fleet management system as well as web and mobile flight planning capabilities.
Flight plans can be automatically created and amended, and flight requests approved or declined, while temporary or permanent no fly zones can also be configured in the system.
Hannu Juurakko, Frequentis’ VP ATM Civil and chairman of the ATM executive team, commented: “The UTM system is now operational at Bodø Airport and Kristiansund Airport. We are pleased to be working closely with Avinor ANS on their goals for commercial drone use, shaping the future of UTM together.
“By providing an advanced drone management environment that integrates both manned and unmanned traffic, we ensure information flow between all relevant stakeholders in real-time.” The Application was delivered fully cloud based during Covid-19. Meetings were held entirely virtually. The complete solution is operated from a cloud environment.”