SME Partnership wins challenge to improve autonomous flight safety with 3D risk maps
Zenotech and CyberVector have won funding from the Future Flight Challenge to establish safe, autonomous and radio-controlled drone flight by producing accurate 3D risk maps. The two high-tech SMEs have joined forces to take on the complex challenge of dynamically mapping the combined risks in urban environments to improve drone safety and push its viability forward. The project will receive a share of £30 million from the Future Flight Challenge, part of the Industrial Strategy Challenge Fund, delivered by UK Research and Innovation.
This collaboration will advance autonomous, or semi-autonomous, near-ground flight safety in complex urban environments, such as the so-called urban canyons. Future flight services are at risk from adverse aerodynamics, and complex cityscapes, which affect wind and gusts, as well as GPS, radio and cell phone signals. To provide safe conditions, stakeholders need a detailed understanding of the risks.
With distinct and advanced capabilities in electromagnetic and aerodynamic modelling and measurement, CyberVector and Zenotech aim to provide a detailed understanding of these risks. The application of this project will move the autonomous flight sector forward, with customers and stakeholders across industries, including, insurance, legislators, service operators, drone manufacturers, communications providers, urban planners and law enforcement agencies for cities around the world.
This project builds on existing research by Zenotech with DASA defence and security funding transferring their expertise to the civil airspace. It also leverages previous work by CyberVector with private R&D funding into passive radar and Machine Learning led data fusion.
David Standingford, Director and Co-founder of Zenotech said:
“We are delighted to be kickstarting this innovative project with CyberVector to help make autonomous flight safer in the UK and globally. Zenotech is part of another Future Flight winning consortium with FlareBright to improve urban drone safety, so this double win is a real seal of approval for our growing reputation in the field of flight mobility.
“Through our zCFD product, we will be building on our existing work on autonomous flight for the defence and security sector. The application of this technology will be a game-changer for the industry and another step in making autonomous flight in the complex urban environments, safe and viable.”
Rufus Firesmith of CyberVector commented:
“We believe that specialist SMEs can bring their particular expertise together to address problems of great scale and complexity. If successful, the opportunity provided by UKRI for CyberVector to work with Zenotech on multi-factor 3D risk maps could be transformational for near-ground autonomous future flight in complex urban environments. The impact on Autonomous Traffic Management (ATM) or Unmanned Traffic Management (UTM) could provide the basis to make autonomous flight in complex urban environments a reality.”For Press Enquiries, please contact:
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