British UAV manufacturer Evolve Dynamics has has partnered with radar technology specialist Cambridge Sensoriis to perform fully autonomous drone landing. Cambridge Sensoriis’ ARC radar sensor devices have been integrated with Evolve Dynamics’ Sky Mantis UAV to achieve autonomous landing, loitering and zonal position hold without the use of any other sensors. The system is suited to operation in GPS-denied environments.
According to the press release, the partnership sees Cambridge Sensoriis’ ground-based radar beacons communicating with a Sensoriis airside radar mounted in the Sky Mantis aircraft, which passes precision positioning data to the autopilot. This technology offers robust positioning autonomy to Evolve Dynamics’ Sky Mantis for operations involving vessel landing, loitering in holding positions both static and moving, and constraining flight to defined corridors or zones. With the use of Sensoriis’ radar, Sky Mantis can launch from, follow, and land on a moving vehicle or boat.
Evolve Dynamics’ Chief Commercial Officer, Laurence Mallinson said: “By using radar pods that communicate with each other, our UAVs will be able to land autonomously in any weather, on a moving host platform, or in a GPS-denied environment. The key aspect of the system is that it is not reliant on visual navigation methods such as 2D barcodes or LED’s, and therefore is able to operate in adverse weather conditions and complete invisibility, such as fog or mist.”
Evolve Dynamics’ CEO, Mike Dewhirst, said: “This is a major step forward. To achieve resilient autonomy and positioning without existing infrastructure, such as GPS, is essential. This is critical in defence scenarios, where we already have a strong market presence, as well as for the general scalability of industry drone solutions that will require strong resilience and redundancy.”
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