Avinor issues tender for nationwide UAS traffic management system

Avinor has issued a Request for Proposal for a new Uncrewed Traffic Management (UTM) system.

“As one of the first movers in Europe, Avinor has successfully operated a fully integrated UTM system at 17 of our airports since 2020, “said Axel Knutsen, Avinor Drone Program VP, in a Linkedin post. “In this time, we have seen over 100% user increase for every year and have gained immeasurable knowledge on key challenges tied to uncrewed aviation. Key milestones also include winning two ATM Awards and sharing data with third party users for increased safety.

“With an increasing demand for drones in society there is a need to expand our services, further facilitating the safe and efficient management of complex drone operations. It is also vital to establish commercial models for all actors in the industry to further scale drone operations. Avinor is now looking to implement the next generation of UTM in order to provide nationwide services.

“Avinor is set to be designated as the responsible service provider of Common Information Services, in accordance with Implementing Regulation (EU) 2021/664. We want to enable the U-space concept in Norway, and to provide a wide range of services to drones, drone operators and other airspace stakeholders outside of U-space as well.”

According to the tender request document:

“The purpose of the procurement is to enter into an agreement for the procurement of an UTM-system.  It is estimated that around 500.000 drones are operating in Norway today. Approximately 2.000 companies are working actively with drones or drone technology. The users range from private companies, governments, agencies, and hobby users. Flying Beyond Visual Line of Sight (BVLOS) is common and several operators have permission to do so regularly, while other have a Light UAS Operator Certificate (LUC). The rising number of drones increases the need for service provision to both crewed and uncrewed aviation.

“Today, the Customer has an operational UTM system in Norway. This system provides flight authorisation at 17 Norwegian airports and a basic geo-awareness service in the rest of the airspace. Drone Operators use an application or web portal named Ninox Drone to access these services. The current system reaches end of life October 2025, and the Customer will replace that system with a new system. The next phase for the Customer is to implement a new nationwide UTM system, providing services in both controlled and uncontrolled airspace, as well as inside and outside of U-space airspace.

“These services should be provided to Drone Operators, air traffic service providers (ATSP), government agencies and other relevant stakeholders such as, but not limited to, GeoManagers. Implementing Regulation (EU) 2021/664 on a regulatory framework for the U-space lays down rules and procedures for the safe operations of UAS in the U-space airspace, for the safe integration of UAS into the aviation system and for the provision of U-space services, hereafter referred to as Implementing Regulation (EU) 2021/664.

“The Customer is committed to abide by the regulation, and the new UTM system shall be compliant with Implementing Regulation (EU) 2021/664 and Acceptable Means of Compliance and Guidance Material to Regulation (EU) 2021/664 for those airspaces where the regulation is applicable, including Common Information Service (CIS) and U-space Service Provider (USSP) provision. The Customer expects to be designated as the single Common Information Service provider (S-CISP) in Norway.

“To enable growth in the uncrewed aviation industry, the new system will need to provide some, or all, Common Information Services outside of U-space airspace as well. Additionally, the Customer will provide USSP services within U-space airspace, and similar services outside of U-space airspace, to further promote growth in the industry.

“The Customer provides air traffic services to 45 airports in Norway, both in controlled and uncontrolled airspace. The total number of airports where the Customer provides air traffic service could vary depending on external factors. National legislation requires Drone Operators to request flight authorisation by the air traffic service provider within a drone restricted zone around the airports.

“To facilitate safe and efficient operations for drone operations in the vicinity of these airports, the Customer requires a solution that provides services to and communication between Drone Operators and the air traffic service provider. Such services should be highly automated to manage the increasing number of operations.

“The main goal with the implementation of the new, nationwide Avinor UTM system is to:

  • Provide safe, efficient, and predictable access to the airspace for Drone Operators
  • Provide safe and efficient handling of drone operations for air traffic services
  • Provide a better situational awareness for all operators in the airspace, crewed and uncrewed
  • Provide services to Drone Operators in U-space, controlled airspace, uncontrolled airspace and UAS geographical zones
  • Provide technological solutions and services to Drone Operators that enables advanced BVLOS operations at large scale and in an efficient manner
  • Gather comprehensive data and statistics from drone operations in Norwegian airspace, to be used for analytical, safety related and commercial purposes
  • Provide air traffic services, authority users, partners, and customers with necessary tools to manage, view and operate airspaces for safety, security, and commercial reasons • Generate revenue for the Customer, and its partners and customers Other stakeholders, such as governmental entities like the Police, other air traffic service providers, and private companies, should be able to utilize the system through Avinor.

“Avinor wishes to find the best solution to the challenges of the future together with the Supplier and requests this objective to be reflected in the answers to this tender.”

Estimated value excluding VAT: 50,000,000 NOK

Deadline for receipt of requests to participate: 2024-01-03+01:00 13:00:58+01:00

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