NEWS: Unmanned Experts Partners With Aeryon Labs In Select NASA UTM Test Flights

Building on its strengths of innovation, collaboration and safety, Unmanned Experts partners with Aeryon Labs Inc., the NASA Ames Research Center and other industry stakeholders in the development and testing of an Unmanned Aircraft System Traffic Management (UTM) System.

The UTM System, being developed under a NASA partnership program, would enable safe and efficient low-altitude airspace operations. The final system, anticipated to be operational in 2019, should provide services such as airspace design, corridors, dynamic geofencing, route planning, sequencing and spacing. In addition, the UTM should provide unmanned aircraft operators with severe weather and wind avoidance, congestion management, terrain avoidance and contingency management.

In late August, Unmanned Experts was selected as one of 12 partners (out of a field of over 200) to participate in the first round of UTM System testing, also known as Build 1. This first round of testing focused on creating, analyzing and managing aircraft trajectories, and developing constraints that will enable interactive operations with other airspace users.

Unmanned Experts, an industry leader in unmanned aircraft use for infrastructure inspection, aerial mapping and public safety services, organised a rapid prototyping of their proprietary software to facilitate communication between the unmanned aircraft and the UTM System. The Aeryon SkyRanger, one of the most capable aircraft in the Unmanned Experts fleet, was the obvious choice for software development and testing of the UTM System. The software will eventually enable unmanned vehicle operations to occur safely alongside manned aircraft and over populated areas.

Drew Jurkofsky, Project Manager and Chief Knowledge Officer at Unmanned Experts said, “We are rapidly approaching the time when manned and unmanned aircraft will coexist and perform tasks more effectively, more efficiently and with far greater safety. UMEX and our partners, like Aeryon Labs, are dedicated to working with the visionaries at NASA to speed up the safe and reliable acceptance of unmanned aircraft in the National Airspace System.”

Aeryon Labs, manufacturer of the Aeryon SkyRanger sUAS, teamed with UMEX to support testing of the UTM System. The SkyRanger, with a 50-minute flight time and both autonomous and semi-autonomous flight modes, passed a rigorous airworthiness and flight readiness review by NASA in order to participate. The sUAS incorporates multiple fail safes and Mission Control Software capable of geo-fencing and creating no-fly zones that are necessary for safe operations. Additionally, the SkyRanger is configured to send continuous telemetry and other data parameters that were integrated with Unmanned Experts’ software and communicated with the UTM System.

“We are pleased to support the UTM program with Unmanned Experts,” commented Dave Kroetsch, President and CEO, Aeryon Labs. “Our sUAS are purpose-built to be safe and reliable so that operators can focus on their jobs with confidence. To participate in the UTM program that will set the standards for safe UAS operations within the U.S. airspace, is just one example of our commitment to unmanned aviation.”

Unmanned Experts and Aeryon Labs look forward to continued partnership with NASA and participating in future UTM System development.

Unmanned Experts Inc. (www.unmannedexperts.com) is a Colorado Corporation providing world class UAS training, Consultancy and Managed Services. Our Team of professionals has over 25,000 flying hours on UAS platforms and over 35,000 flying hours on manned aircraft. Unmanned Experts is staffed by UAS and Remotely Piloted Aircraft System (RPAS) pilots, operators and maintainers as well as specialists with expertise in all areas of unmanned operations, providing dependable; approachable and affordable mentorship in the UAS sector.

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