Long-range UAS sense and avoid technology “successfully demonstrated”

Press reports say Iris Automation has successfully demonstrated the first long range, airborne sense and avoid system for industrial UAS as part of the Federal Aviation Administration’s Pathfinder programme.

UAS Vision reports that the Iris Automation Collision Avoidance System detected, classified, and tracked a Cessna 172 Skyhawk at ranges up to 1400 ft as it made numerous passes over the test field, as part of a two-day evaluation. The sense and avoid system “was mounted on an airborne industrial multicopter, and operated in real-time without any reliance on a downlink or wireless connection. Using sophisticated computer vision algorithms, the Iris system packs long-range detection and avoidance capabilities into an ultra-low cost, size, weight, and power package for small industrial UAS.”

According to Iris Automation: “Through the Early Adopter Program, Iris Automation will be testing its state-of-the-art computer vision approach to robust air-to-air UAV collision avoidance alongside UAV manufacturers. InDro Robotics and Stratus Aeronautics are leading Canadian drone companies, tackling diverse applications like emergency first response and mining exploration. Iris’ first successful integrations on two unique platforms, supported by different autopilot systems, highlight the platform-agnostic approach of the Iris system that will pave the way for safe, Beyond-Visual-Line-Of-Sight drone operations in the near future.”

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