Celestia Technologies Group (CTG) is taking part in the ADACORSA project, a European initiative designed to unlock the potential of long-range and Beyond Visual Line of Sight (BVLOS) drones and give Europe a world-class drone industry.
ADACORSA or Airborne Data Collection on Resilient System Architecture, is a major collaborative project launched in May 2020 that aims to demonstrate the safety and efficiency of drones or unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) in extended out of line of sight operation ranges.
Specifically, it draws on European expertise in developing sensor and communication technologies for UAVs to underpin their role and reliable capability in long-range applications, including observation, analysis and transport, taking them one step further towards being integrated into conventional airspace. It also seeks to increase public and regulatory acceptance of modern UAV or drone technology. More than 49 specialist companies from 12 European countries are expected to contribute know-how and practical support.
Included within the project scope is the research and development of innovative components and systems for airborne observation and detection, telecommunication and data processing along the electronics value-chain.
To meet ADACORSA’s ambitious targets, a number of task forces has been set up, one of which will be led by CTG. The company will lead the development of electronic components for reliable and fail-operational environment perception and run one project demonstrator designed to integrate unmanned aircraft systems safely into the common European airspace and ensure they operate correctly in a multi- unmanned aircraft system environment.
CTG will use its expertise in on-board UAV electronics to develop a lightweight, high performance transponder capable of sending and receiving accurate identification and location data for unmanned aerial vehicles.
Positioning will be based on the European Global Navigation Satellite System (GNSS) Galileo supplemented by its European Geostationary Navigation Overlay Service, EGNOS, allowing all airspace users to know the location of the vehicle and contribute to safety whilst supporting other on-board systems such as Detect & Avoid equipment.
The transponder will be based on conventional aviation technologies such as Mode S Interrogator and Automatic Dependent Surveillance-Broadcast (ADS-B) and will integrate new concepts like Network Identification, meaning the vehicle can fly safely in numerous different scenarios. These include in locations close to airports, in drone fleet operations and within the U-Space environment.
In committing a highly experienced, skilled team to ADACORSA, President of Celestia Technologies Group José Alonso comments, “This is a significant and far-reaching project which offers excellent potential for the European UAV market at a pivotal moment in its development. We are excited and honoured to be making a contribution.”
“Our expertise and track record in deploying innovative solutions in on-board UAV electronics means we can deliver real progress to help the consortium meet its goals. In collaboration with other specialists, we look to implement a novel system that greatly benefits UAV security and reliability, giving Europe a competitive edge in this, the fastest-growing segment of the aviation industry,” he says.
ADACORSA has received funding from the ECSEL Joint Undertaking (JU) under grant agreement No 876019. The JU receives support from the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme and Germany, Netherlands, Austria, Romania, France, Sweden, Cyprus, Greece, Lithuania, Portugal, Italy, Finland, Turkey.