SalusUAV won funding from Innovate UK to build a long-range autonomous UAS:
- Flying beyond visual line of sight
- Able to choose optimal routings
- Able to sense and avoid other aircraft
- Do the above autonomously
Understanding the potential of unmanned flight
An unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) or “drone” as it is commonly called, is an unmanned aircraft flown under the guidance of a remote human operator. A drone can achieve every mission type that conventional aircraft can, but more conveniently and efficiently. Currently most countries limit their use to short range airborne data collection, however researchers and businesses are demonstrating that the capabilities of drones are much more far reaching.
Unlocking the solution to safe BVLOS flight will enable the UK to access a huge commercial opportunity
Building on manned aviation
Aviation regulations currently limit wider applications by prohibiting flight beyond the operator’s visual line of sight, and restrict the sharing of airspace with conventional manned aircraft. However, the Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) do provide guidance on the capabilities that a drone would require in order for airspace sharing approval to be considered. Due to the likely number and complexity of drone operations, to enable the integration of drones into UK airspace will require a paradigm shift in the approach to Air Traffic Management.
In this project SalusUAV and the University of Bath will demonstrate a revolutionary approach to the integration of UAS. We have developed software that enables the synthesis of multiple data streams to produce a real-time risk model of the drone’s environment. The drone can then simulate route options in real-time to identify the route of lowest risk. If successful this approach could function at both operator and controller level, and for flight planning and real time control.