Israel’s Innovation Authority announces tender for Israeli participation in next-stage U-space trials

According to the Israel’s Innovation Authority:

“Following the success of the first Call for Proposals demonstrating drone operations in a managed airspace under predefined area conditions, as part of the National Drones Initiative, Israel’s Innovation Authority has invited Israeli technology companies to participate in the second demonstration pilot program (TRL 6 and above) in managed airspace (U-Space) in coordination with the air traffic management bodies at the countrywide level.

“The Call for Proposals aims to leverage upon the achievements of the initial Call for Proposals (5185) to advance the capabilities required for achieving countrywide deployment by connecting up to the national supervisory and control infrastructures (Israel Airports Authority, civilian control towers, Air Force, and enforcement bodies), opening the skies to regular managed and automatic commercial activity throughout the country.

“The Call for Proposals, produced in collaboration with the Civil Aviation Authority, the Ministry of Transport Intelligent Transportation Administration Ayalon Highways, and the Innovation Authority, will support the operation of manned and unmanned aircraft, including drones, to streamline and improve transportation in Israel and develop the ecosystem in this field.

“The programme is intended for Israeli technology companies in operation, command, control, tracking, drones, unmanned aircraft networks management and airspace management, including advanced software solutions and their cyber protection, designed to operate in and/or between urban areas.  Also, for companies capable of bringing, licensing, and flying suitable platforms for the above purposes.

“Foreign companies interested in taking part in the demonstrations are invited to do so and receive regulatory support without direct financial support from the Initiative. A foreign company must be represented by a licensed aerospace operator in Israel who shall assume responsibility for all licensing operations required as well as operation in practice.

“The Call for Proposals was made for the purpose of improving upon multiple efforts:

  • Regulation by setting up a regulatory sandbox.
  • The making of the various USSP services accessible to all interested parties connected with the management and supervision of air traffic in Israel.
  • Experimenting the deployment of controlled airspaces including those in dense urban areas as well as those close to airports for offering varied services to the public using and autonomous aircraft.
  • Expansion of the range and usable payload mass of service offered by means of and autonomous aircraft beyond visual line of sight for delivery applications as well as, agricultural spraying, observation, photography, monitoring, supervision and security, including support for routine operations of emergency and rescue services.
  • Embedding of dedicated interfaces to interested parties based on technologies and devices in the process of being adopted by the Civil Aviation Authority—USPACE principles, with the aim of achieving full automation.
  • Streamlining and improvement of transportation and reduction of roadway congestion in Israel and world-wide.
  • Formation and growth of entire stable companies in Israel promoting technological and innovative solutions.
  • Development, application and embedding of technologies and operating concepts for the advancement of airborne haulage networks using manned and unmanned aircraft including drones for the benefit of the country’s transportation system and economy.

Programme Phases

Initial period – 2023:

Completion of development, adaptations and preparations stage

Specification and development of first phase (including autonomous air traffic management system)

Proof of airworthiness of new aircraft

Development and implementation of interfaces to control and supervisory bodies and testing them by simulation.

Advancement of landing grounds infrastructure (classification into different load ratings, landing accuracies, safety, weather, sharing with public)

Demonstration stage

Cycles of simulation days for verification of design assumptions followed by flying days in predetermined timeslots in coordination with control and supervisory bodies progressively starting from small and less busy control towers and concluding with BG and/or Ramon Airport.

The USSP air picture shall be presented during the entire trial at the control towers—initially on a separate monitor (monitors side by side) and later on, depending on practical capabilities, embedded in the aerial view shown in the control towers.

Performance of demonstrations to different scenarios at an increasing complexity while integrating in the market and enabling commercial trials.

The National Drones Initiative Administration in Ayalon Highways Ltd. will provide an area in the Metropolitan Command Centre including:

  • Two “controller” positions
  • Shift supervisor’s position
  • Command and display monitors
  • Telephones and furniture—to support operating capability as UAV Service Provider.

For more information

(Image: Tel Aviv city center, Israel, aerial drone view Tel Aviv – Israel, Shutterstock)

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