Standards: A little less conversation, a little more action please!

Jul 21 2020

Posted by Altitude Angel Webinar

news main image Standards, a little less conversation webinar title



On Tuesday, 21 July Altitude Angel held a webinar titled, ‘Standards: A Little Less Conversation, A Little More Action Please’.

The webinar panel, moderated by Altitude Angel’s Head of Air Traffic Management, Phil Binks, was made up of the company Founder and CEO Richard Parker, Chief Operating Officer, Chris Forster and Mike Gadd, Head of Certification & Regulatory Affairs.

During the lively debate, the panel discussed numerous topics around the subject of standards, including the setting and usefulness of standards, how they are arrived at, the drivers of standards being proposed, and most importantly, are standards helping drive the industry forward?

“The innovation of the best technical solutions is key, and standards should be used to aid a solution, not be a precursor to developing it,” said Chris. “We [the industry] should use existing standards where it makes sense to do so and not just create another standard for the sake of it. When we get to common standards, I believe they are best created by industry in a collaborative way.  When standards are created by one or more parties, we should be careful not to stifle innovation by forcing a solutions direction.”

Mike added: “Standards are a tool to help different players work together, either to build systems and services that address the market needs or to enable the regulators to determine these solutions are fit for purpose.  I see the challenge is to be clear on what these systems and services need to do and how they fit into the airspace design and management strategies of different countries.  Greater clarity on these, and even better, for the industry to be part of defining what they are, can only help resolve solutions and accelerate their implementation."

As the debate drew to a close, Richard was asked to summerise his thoughts. “There are two key points I would like to make. The first is standards in this context are about the airspace, not about traffic management per se.

“And secondly, standards are an important tool in enabling the evolution of UTM, but they are just a tool, not a panacea. It’s important to recognise standards (plural) cover different aspects, some are technical and some are procedural, but all are a means to demonstrate or comply with a requirement or regulation: careful articulation of the regulations is therefore key to identify areas in which standardisation would be helpful.

“Standardisation as a purely academic activity, in and of itself should not be the goal, and the industry should be mindful of standards bodies, companies and individuals developing or proposing such standards both in a vacuum and where the standard is effectively the product.”

This webinar was the first in a series where the team at Altitude Angel share their thoughts, views, and opinions on a number of topics and subjects surrounding the UAV industry today, with future webinars featuring special guests.   

We would like to spark debate and reasoned conversation. You may agree with what we say, you might oppose, but we’re open to the debate and keep an open mind and are pleased to host this forum.

If there’s a topic or subject you would like to hear the team at Altitude Angel discuss, then please feel free to get in touch. It is our intention to invite external contributors to join us on future webinars so if you know someone who may like to be involved then once again, please feel free to let us know.


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

For further information please contact:

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

+44 (0)118 391 3503


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