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Vigilant Aerospace recently announced the successful completion of beyond visual line-of-sight testing of the latest version of the FlightHorizon detect-and-avoid system for unmanned aircraft.

The tests were conducted in NASA Armstrong’s controlled airspace by professional unmanned aircraft test pilots and observed by the NASA science team, including inventor Ricardo Arteaga, by a senior regulator from the FAA, by a representative of the FCC and by Vigilant Aerospace’s CEO and Co-Founder.

Industry reaction has been widespread and immediate, with nearly every major unmanned aircraft industry publication covering the tests. Here is a sampling of the coverage:

 

DJI Phantom 4s used in sense-and-avoid testing

February 1, 2017 By Scott Simmie

From the article:

An autonomous detect-and-avoid technology has been successfully tested using DJI Phantom 4 drones in yet another important step toward a world with integrated airspace.

The exercise was meant to test the effectiveness of the technology in Beyond Line-of-Sight flights with small and medium-sized unmanned aircraft. The eventual end-game is the integration of unmanned aerial vehicles with manned aerial vehicles in the same airspace.

“The system successfully detected and tracked intruder aircraft and provided traffic alerts and collision warnings on 100% of air traffic during the encounters.”

Any evasive actions weren’t, however, fully autonomous. According to the release, the system warned the human operators of a potential conflict in the flight paths – “allowing the drone pilots to avoid collisions between the aircraft.” However, the software does instruct the pilot on the appropriate evasive manoeuvre.

But, significantly, the scenarios were beyond the visual line of sight. Those flights, say the release, “simulated real-world scenarios in which visual detection of approaching aircraft by ground-based unmanned pilots might not be possible due to distance, weather, altitude and speed.”

These weren’t just simple tests. The FAA’s senior UAV regulator was on hand to observe, as was an FCC observer whose task was to monitor radio transmissions.

Read the full article: DJI Phantom 4s used in sense-and-avoid testing

 

Detect-and-Avoid UAS System Successfully Trialed Beyond Line of Sight

February 1, 2017 by Betsy Lillian

From the article:

The flights tested the system’s DAA algorithms, hardware integration and user interface performance. Eighteen different scenarios were flown multiple times using two DJI Phantom 4 drones; one aircraft acted as the primary ownship, and the other acted as an intruder aircraft.

Vigilant Aerospace says its system successfully detected and tracked the intruder aircraft and provided warnings on 100% of air traffic during the encounters. The scenarios triggered the system’s traffic alerts, threat alerts and collision warnings – in turn, allowing the drone pilots to avoid collisions.

Read the full article: Detect-and-Avoid UAS System Successfully Trialed Beyond Line of Sight

 

Vigilant Aerospace Completes BLOS Test at NASA’s Armstrong Flight Research Center

January 30, 2017 by AUVSI News

From the article:

During the test, the system was used to detect and track intruder aircraft, as well as provide traffic alerts and collision warnings on all air traffic during the encounters.

The flights, which were conducted at NASA’s Armstrong Flight Research Center in Edwards, California, showcased FlightHorizon’s ability to provide BLOS flight safety for small and midsized UAS, which help to not only meet FAA regulations, but also integrate UAS into the national airspace.

Read the full article: Vigilant Aerospace Completes BLOS Test at NASA’s Armstrong Flight Research Center

 

Vigilant Aerospace Completes Beyond Line-of-Sight UAS Detect-and-Avoid Flight Testing at NASA Armstrong

January 30, 2017 by The Editor

From the article:

The system successfully detected and tracked intruder aircraft and provided traffic alerts and collision warnings on 100% of air traffic during the encounters.

Eighteen different scenarios were flown multiple times using two DJI Phantom 4 drones with one aircraft acting as the primary ownship while the other acted as an intruder aircraft.

The scenarios triggered the system’s traffic alerts, threat alerts and collision warnings, allowing the drone pilots to avoid collisions between the aircraft.

The encounters included beyond line-of-sight flights that simulated real-world scenarios in which visual detection of approaching aircraft by ground-based unmanned pilots might not be possible due to distance, weather, altitude and speed.

Read the full article: Vigilant Aerospace Completes Beyond Line-of-Sight UAS Detect-and-Avoid Flight Testing at NASA Armstrong

 

New Detect-and-Avoid System for Drones Completes BLOS Flight Tests

January 30, 2017

From the article:

Sense-and-avoid systems are critical to integrating unmanned aircraft into the national airspace and to make beyond line-of-sight drones safe to share airspace with manned aircraft. FlightHorizon is designed to comply with FAA drone regulations on beyond line-of-sight flight, night flying and airspace authorization including Part 107.200 waiver requirements and RTCA SC-228 [Phase II] operating standards. All transponder data was logged in FlightHorizon and is being used by NASA and Vigilant Aerospace to continue to improve and add new features to the system.

Read the full article:  New Detect-and-Avoid System for Drones Completes BLOS Flight Tests

 

Another Step Towards BVLOS Flight: Vigilant Completes Testing at NASA Armstrong

January 27, 2017 by Miriam McNabb

From the article:

Oklahoma-based Vigilant Aerospace has completed successful beyond visual line- of-sight (BVLOS) flight testing of its new FlightHorizon detect-and-avoid collision avoidance system for drones at the NASA Armstrong Flight Research Center in Edwards, California. The tests demonstrated the system’s ability to provide BVLOS flight safety for both small and mid-sized unmanned aircraft.

Read the full article: Another Step Towards BVLOS Flight: Vigilant Completes Testing at NASA Armstrong

 

Vigilant Aerospace Completes Beyond Line-of-Sight UAS Detect-and-Avoid Flight Testing at NASA Armstrong

January 27, 2017

From the article:

The tests were observed by the FAA’s senior UAV regulator, by an FCC observer to monitor radio transmissions, and were the culmination of a multi-month program of development, safety planning and test preparation, concluding in December, 2016.

Read the full article: Vigilant Aerospace Completes Beyond Line-of-Sight UAS Detect-and-Avoid Flight Testing at NASA Armstrong

 

Vigilant Aerospace Completes BLOS Flight Testing

January 31, 2017 by Kelley Roberts

From the article:

Vigilant Aerospace, the industry leader in next-generation flight management and safety systems, is making headlines. The company has successfully completed beyond line-of-sight flight testing of its new FlightHorizon detect-and-avoid collision avoidance system for unmanned aerial systems.

Read the full article: Vigilant Aerospace Completes BLOS Flight Testing

 

Vigilant Aerospace concludes beyond line-of-sight UAS detect-and-avoid flight test

January 31, 2017

From the article:

Vigilant Aerospace has exclusively licensed the NASA patent and software, which forms the basis of its FlightHorizon product.

The company noted that its FlightHorizon system uses off-the-shelf hardware and the existing national air-traffic control system.

Read the full article: Vigilant Aerospace concludes beyond line-of-sight UAS detect-and-avoid flight test

 

Test success for unmanned aircraft detect-and-avoid system

January 31, 2017

From the article:

The tests — in the presence of FAA and FCC observers — demonstrated the system’s ability to provide beyond line-of-sight flight safety for both small and mid-sized unmanned aircraft to help comply with FAA regulations and integrate drones into the national airspace.

The encounters included beyond line-of-sight flights that simulated real-world scenarios in which visual detection of approaching aircraft by ground-based unmanned pilots might not be possible due to distance, weather, altitude and speed.

Read the full article: Test success for unmanned aircraft detect-and-avoid system

 

Vigilant Aerospace Completes BVLOS Flight Testing

January 27, 2017

From the article:

A significant advantage of the FlightHorizon system is that it utilizes off-the-shelf hardware, uses the existing national air-traffic control system and can be used on both smaller and larger UAVs.

Read the full article: Vigilant Aerospace Completes BVLOS Flight Testing

 

Beyond Line-of-Sight UAS Detect-and-Avoid flight testing wraps up

February 11, 2017

From the article:

The tests were observed by the FAA’s senior UAV regulator, by an FCC observer to monitor radio transmissions, and were the culmination of a multi-month program of development, safety planning and test preparation, concluding in December 2016.

Vigilant Aerospace has licensed the NASA patent and software that forms the basis for the company’s FlightHorizon product, which was invented by Dr. Ricardo Arteaga at NASA Armstrong.

Read the full article: Beyond Line-of-Sight UAS Detect-and-Avoid flight testing wraps up

 

Drone Detect-And-Avoid System Tests Successful at NASA Armstrong

February 15, 2017 by S.L. Fuller

From the article:

Vigilant Aerospace has made progress in beyond-line-of-sight drone operation, the company said. It recently tested its FlightHorizon detect-and-avoid collision avoidance system for unmanned aircraft systems at NASA Armstrong Flight Research Center in Edwards, California. […]

The FAA’s senior drone regulator and a representative from the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) observed the tests, the latter monitoring radio transmissions. FlightHorizon was designed to comply with FAA regulations and received all necessary waivers to operate.

Read the full article: AviationToday.com – Drone Detect-And-Avoid System Tests Successful at NASA Armstrong

 

Vigilant Aerospace completes UAS detect-and-avoid flight testing

January 27, 2017

From the article:

The encounters included beyond line-of-sight flights that simulated real-world scenarios in which visual detection of approaching aircraft by ground-based unmanned pilots might not be possible due to distance, weather, altitude and speed.

Read the full article: Vigilant Aerospace completes UAS detect-and-avoid flight testing

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