Extending the range of the UAS beyond visual line-of-sight

XPONENTIAL 2018--DENVER. Unmanned aerial system (UAS) technology provider PrecisionHawk (Raleigh, North Carolina) debuted what it says is the first beyond visual line of sight (BVLOS)-enabled, multirotor drone platform at the AUVSI Xponential event.

The , says PrecisionHawk, uses a new mix of technology to automatically identify all cooperative and noncooperative aircraft within a 10-km (6.2-mile) radius, thereby ensuring airspace deconfliction well before potential confrontation.

The platform was designed based on the findings and recommendations in the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) Pathfinder Report, which acts as a blueprint for enterprises to conduct BVLOS drone operations. The new multirotor UAS -- which can operate two hours and up to 40 miles in a single flight -- uses GPS technology to broadcast the location and trajectory of the drone at all times, making it visible to drones and other aircraft in its vicinity; includes low-altitude traffic and airspace safety (LATAS) technology, which provides access to real-time manned aircraft data; and integrates an acoustic-based aircraft detection (ABAD) system to detect noncooperative aircraft.

“Under the regulatory framework for conducting drone operations, drone pilots are required to “see and avoid” other aircraft. Easily done on an aircraft with humans in the cockpit, this is far more challenging for a drone pilot located on the ground,” said Allison Ferguson, director of airspace safety at PrecisionHawk. “This is where choosing the right assistive technology is critical to safe BVLOS flight.”

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