The SESAR Invircat fourth and final newsletter reports findings and achievements with regards to the integration of remotely piloted aircraft systems (RPAS) into the existing Air Traffic Control (ATC) procedures and infrastructures within Terminal Maneuvering Areas (TMA) under instrument flight rules (IFR). It also highlights the role of the project in the broader context of the European ATM Master Plan and SESAR 3 Joint Undertaking research.
According to Gunnar Schwoch, INVIRCAT Project Coordinator, German Aerospace Center (DLR), Invircat showed that it is possible to integrate different types of RPAS in different types of airspace and at different airports under appropriate conditions. It considers the local traffic and environment without entailing a significant impact on the current airspace users. INVIRCAT is an important step towards a seamless integration of RPAS, unlocking the potential of global and efficient RPAS operations.
Nil Agacdiken, Programme Manager, SESAR 3 Joint Undertaking, said: “The main objective of INVIRCAT, a SESAR 3 JU research project, was to develop a concept of operations (CONOPS) for remotely piloted aircraft systems (RPAS) in the terminal manoeuvring area of airports. To meet its objectives, the project carried extensive simulations, validations and defined high-level operational and technical requirements, as well as a set of recommendations for rule makers and standardisation bodies. The project worked in close coordination with the SESAR 3 Joint Undertaking from the beginning until end and delivered high quality deliverables. The project also engaged successfully with other stakeholders via its Advisory Board. In addition, the project took the lead in coordinating with the other related projects to ensure a consistent and coherent approach within the context of RPAS and U-space research and innovation. Given that the project has met all its objectives in accordance with priorities set out in the European ATM Master Plan, and has reached the expected technology readiness level (V1/TRL2), the SESAR 3 JU team recommends that the Invircat concept progress towards V2 maturity.”
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