SESAR exploratory research to explore RPAS IFR operations in terminal manoeuvring area

A share of the EUR38.5 million European Commission funding released at the end of May for SESAR exploratory research projects includes three programmes that address safe integration of Remotely Piloted Aircraft Systems (RPAS) operations flying under Instrument Flight Rules (IFR). The projects are among 29 selected to receive co-funding under the EU’s Horizon 2020 budget.

IFR RPAS Control in Airports And TMA (INVIRCAT) aims to create a concept of operations for remotely piloted aircraft systems in the terminal manoeuvring area of airports, assessing it through simulations and draft a set of recommendations for rule makers and standardisation bodies. Participants include: Deutsches Zentrum für Luft- und Raumfahrt e.V; (Coordinator); Centro Italiano Ricerche Aerospaziali; Deep Blue; Eurocontrol; Ingeniería de Sistemas para la Defensa de España S.A; Institute for Sustainable Society and Innovation; and Stichting Nationaal Lucht- en Ruimtevaartlaboratorium

Safe Landing through enhanced ground support (SAFELAND) aims to support flight and landing of aircraft operated by a single pilot, in case of partial or total incapacitation of the pilot. SAFELAND will focus on the ground side, specifically on the role air traffic management could have in managing the transition from a single pilot operated flight to a status with reduced or absent contribution of the onboard pilot to landing. Participants include: Deep Blue (Coordinator); Eurocontrol; Deutsches Zentrum für Luft- und Raumfahrt e.V; European University Institute (EUI); Luftfartsverket; EASN Technology Innovation Services; EuroUSC Italia; Airholding; and Swiss International Air Lines.

In the third project – called A Unified integrated Remain well Clear concept in airspace D-G Class (URClearED) – the aim is to support current study activities on the RWC functionalities by defining and analysing operational scenarios. This will be followed by assessment of requirements and assumptions made in current standards and applicable documents, paving the way to future industrial level activities on such system. Participants include: Centro Italiano Ricerche Aerospaziali; Eurocontrol; Deep Blue; Deutsches Zentrum für Luft- und Raumfahrt e.V; Universitat Politècnica de Catalunya; General Atomics Europe GmbH; and SAAB.

The projects commence in June 2020 and are due to finish in the last quarter of 2022.

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