Droniq and Sky Drone partner to support long-range drone flights using mobile network

Frankfurt-based Droniq and Sky Drone have entered into a strategic partnership that allows Droniq to use Sky Drone’s technology for controlling Unmanned Aircraft Systems (UAS) remotely in real-time and without any limitation in range. Based on this technology Droniq will offer a complete hardware package for locating, controlling and transmitting data of drones during beyond visual line of sight (BVLOS) flights. This technology is part of the UAS Traffic Management (UAS) system Droniq offers for the German market. The Droniq UTM service is designed to allow the safe integration of drones into airspace and provides the basis for broad commercial use of drones over large distances.

According to the company press release, Droniq is now able to provide real-time communication for drones during their flights. By using the 4G/LTE network of Deutsche Telekom, real-time command and control, video, sensor and telemetry data can be transferred with low latency from the drone to the ground control station and vice versa. This technology complements Droniq’s LTE-tracking module “HOD4track” (Hook-On-Device), which sends its position every second via the mobile network to the UTM system. That device also receives signals from helicopters, gliders and small aircraft in the vicinity and sends those to the UTM as well. That way the drone pilot is always apprised of the situation in his airspace. Furthermore, the HOD4track broadcasts its own position so that other aircraft in the vicinity see the drone right in their cockpit.

The CE-conform product “HOD4command” extends Droniq’s offering by adding real-time communication with the drone over unlimited distances. It can be mounted onto any aircraft and integrates seamlessly into all supported autopilots. The drone therefore becomes controllable over long distances. The data communication is end-to-end encrypted and therefore protected from unauthorized access. The Sky Drone technology the HOD4command is based upon, is already in use in Africa and Europe helping deliver medicine and vaccines to hard-to-reach villages. In Germany it is used for intersite logistics of a large pharmaceutical company. The structurally identical product “HOD4stream” is available with a larger data plan that allows real-time transmission of video, sensor and telemetry data. In industrial applications like maintenance and inspection of pipes and routes as well as in industrial facilities, data can be transferred and analyzed in real-time. First responders already use this technology for remote situational awareness.

Ralph Schepp, COO of Droniq said: “Sky Drone perfectly complements the UTM approach of Droniq and is an essential building block for making BVLOS flights reality. We’ve seen the technology being used at several of our customers in Germany and are absolutely convinced of Sky Drone’s technology and their pragmatic mentality.”

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