New surveillance infrastructure deployed at the VantisUAS BVLOS test site in North Dakota

Thales reports installation of the first of two Terma Scanter radars at the Keene site as part of the wider VantisUAS Unmanned Aircraft Systems (UAS) network in North Dakota. A second installation is due to follow at Watford City Airport, designed to support beyond visual line of sight (BVLOS) drone operations.

The Northern Plains UAS Test Site, North Dakota, administers the VantisUAS statewide BVLOS network. VantisUAS provides a launchpad to commercialise BVLOS UAS operations. A Vantis Mission and Network Operations Center (MNOC) is under construction at Grand Sky business and aviation park in Grand Forks. The MNOC is the focal point to secure network operations monitoring and administration, customer coordination and support, performance and safety data reporting.

The VANTIS infrastructure initiative is deploying surveillance and communications infrastructure to enable drones to demonstrate how they can operate safely in multiple environments. The region includes oil and gas industries, agriculture, medical applications, military and emergency response – all interested in using the technology. North Dakota recently invested USD60 million in VantisUAS and has plans to include more territory in the test area in the future to show safe, repeatable BVLOS flight and create a blueprint for other regional and national BVLOS networks.

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