A group of Canadian companies have come together to set up Project SkySensus, a research project intended to advance the use of Remotely Piloted Aircraft System (RPAS) technology beyond visual line of sight (BVLOS). Three Alberta-based enterprises have partnered with defence contractor Peraton Canada in the five-year commitment. The initiative is related to Peraton Canada’s obligations under Canada’s Industrial and Technological Benefits Policy. This policy requires companies winning military and Coast Guard contracts to invest in Canada’s economic development at a commensurate level to the value of the contract. Participation from Transport Canada, NAV Canada and the Department of National Defence will be structured as part of the project.
The companies will jointly implement a series of research and development activities within increasingly progressive complex environments. A series of capability demonstrations will result in risk modelling and technology advancements to increase the safety of future BVLOS operations. In addition to Peraton, the consortium includes drone operator Canadian UAVS, geospatial and automation specialist Aerium Analytics, and the Foremost UAS test range in western Canada.
The Foremost Centre for Unmanned Systems test range is supporting regulatory compliance test and evaluation for the project: an area extending over 700 nautical miles which includes class F restricted airspace up to 18,000 ft for UAS BVLOS research and development and test evaluation.
President and Chief Executive Officer of Calgary Economic Development, Mary Moran said: “There is a lot of significant innovation emerging from Calgary in the area of drones and autonomous vehicles. Today’s SkySensus announcement further highlights this fast-growing sector and it is safe to say that we are a major hub for unmanned systems in Canada.”
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