Altitude Angel offers satellite-based services to provide more resilient UTM platform

Altitude Angel is offering its Unmanned Traffic Management (UTM) platform via satellite link. UTM services usually depend upon ground-based communications network infrastructure, such as cell towers, in order to send and receive instructions and tracking information from drones. In the event of a natural disaster, such as a flooding, wildfire, tsunami, earthquake or volcanic eruption, Altitude Angel says its solution makes safe operation of multiple drone flights more resilient.

According to an Altitude Angel press release: Altitude Angel’s UTM technology platform now includes a tactical conflict resolution service available via a UTM platform at scale. When used in conjunction with partner satellite networks, this enables a lead organisation or agency to deploy an instant UTM platform for the safe operation of drones in challenging environments. It also supports the coordination of aerial unmanned and, if necessary, manned aviation assets.

Altitude Angel says the solution “offers response agencies and drone manufacturers who specifically build drones for deployment in assisting emergency services the choice of multiple communications links, including satellite communications.

“When ground-based communications have been damaged and roads are impassable, the need for numerous organisations to operate multiple drone flights safely over the affected area increases. Each need to perform different operations; for example, one agency using drones will need to find survivors, a second surveys roads ahead of relief supplies being delivered whilst a third searches for potential hazards. The Altitude Angel space-based solution will allow the safe management of these flights, right out-of-the-box at any point across the planet.”

Richard Parker, Altitude Angel, CEO and founder said: “The opportunities for the instant space-based UTM service are wide-reaching and numerous, but this system will be invaluable to aid organisations and those co-ordinating the emergency services, and relieve operations following something like a natural disaster where first-responders are more often turning to unmanned aircraft to assist. We are proud to make our UTM services available for free to all first responders in times of need.”

In order to provide emergency services and first responders with the ability to have a single source point-of-truth where UAVs and manned aviation can be co-ordinated on the same platform, engineers at Altitude Angel were able to adapt existing services to work on higher latency/lower bandwidth networks and to enable ‘mode switching’ to ensure a robust communications link with deployed vehicles is always maintained.

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