Altitude Angel Extends Capability to Offer ‘Space-Based UTM’

Mar 9 2020

Posted by Altitude Angel Announcement

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Platform will give ‘Blue Light’ services the ability to co-ordinate UAV and manned aviation activity in Disaster Zones safely and securely

London, UK;  Altitude Angel, the world’s leading UTM (Unmanned Traffic Management) technology provider announces today the general availability of its UTM platform via popular satellite constellations, bringing critical airspace situation awareness and conflict resolution to remote areas and those affected by natural disasters anywhere on the planet, at any time.

UTM services are typically dependent on the appropriate 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, safe operation of multiple drone flights is compromised as this ground infrastructure isn’t resilient, or in the case of remote areas, not available.

However, the combination of Altitude Angel’s UTM technology platform, which now includes the world’s first tactical Conflict Resolution Service available via a UTM platform at scale, when used in conjunction with partner satellite networks, will allow any lead organisation or agency to deploy an instant UTM platform for the safe operation of drones in even the most challenging of environments. It will also provide the essential coordination of aerial unmanned and, if necessary, manned aviation assets.

Altitude Angel Space-Based UTM Drone ManagementOffering response agencies and drone manufacturers who specifically build drones for deployment in assisting emergency services the choice of multiple communications links, including satellite communications, is a major step in ensuring a UTM service can operate even in the toughest scenarios.

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 relief 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.

Phil Binks, Altitude Angel, Head of Air Traffic Management, added: “The platform we’re offering to first responders will bring clarity to what previously could be a confusing air picture. As we have seen recently with both the flooding across the UK and wildfires in the United States and Australia, unidentified UAVs spotted in affected areas have caused the emergency services to ground rescue helicopters and airtankers, costing valuable time, whilst the operator is identified.

However, many of these sightings are subsequently found to be of drones being operated by the emergency services. What we’re seeing here are different agencies with different primary objectives.  Whereas one group may be focusing on putting a fire out, another may be looking for fires starting.  This system will allow ‘blue light’ flights to continue in tandem with UAV operations, safely and securely.”

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.

If you’d be interested in finding out about our UTM services for first responders and emergency services, get in touch today.

Altitude AngelAltitude Angel

Altitude Angel is an award-winning provider of UTM (Unified Traffic Management) software, enabling those planning to operate, or develop UTM/U-Space solutions, to quickly integrate robust data and services with minimum effort.

From a consistent, well-documented and standards-based platform, drone manufacturers such as DJI and cutting-edge software developers around the world use our Developer Platform to obtain rich, relevant and local geofencing data, exchange and share flight plans, de-conflict their own flights in real-time and interface with national flight authorisation systems. A growing portfolio of enhanced capabilities help our customers to comply with current and future regulations and interface with changing national systems with only minimal effort.

Altitude Angel’s first party solutions also power some of the world’s leading ANSPs, aviation authorities and Enterprises, including LVNL (Netherlands) and Avinor (Norway), empowering them with new capabilities to safely manage and integrate drone traffic into national operations.

Today, Altitude Angel’s market-defining technology is providing a critical, enabling service on which the future of UTM, especially in controlled airspace, will be built across the globe.

By unlocking the potential of drones and helping national aviation authorities, ANSPs, developers and enterprise organisations, Altitude Angel is establishing new services to support the growth in the drone industry.

In 2021 Altitude Angel won a prestigious Air Traffic Management (ATM) Magazine Award in the ‘UTM Service Suppliers’ category, which recognises pioneering technologies and procedures developed by UTM service suppliers to advance safety and complex operations, for its Pop-Up UTM platform.  Read more about the awards here.

Altitude Angel was founded by Richard Parker in 2014 and is headquartered in Reading, UK.

Altitude Angel’s developer platform is open and available to all at https://developers.altitudeangel.com.

For further information please contact:

Stephen Farmer, Altitude Angel, Head of Corporate Communications & PR

+44 (0)118 391 3503

stephen@altitudeangel.com