General Atomics Aeronautical Systems Inc. is advancing its Sense and Avoid system for unmanned aerial vehicles in non-segregated civilian airspace.
A proof of concept SAA system was successfully tested in collaboration with the U.S. Federal Aviation Administration and Honeywell in a demonstration of the FAA's Airborne Collision Avoidance System for Unmanned Aircraft.
The company also performed the first flight tests of a pre-production air-to-air radar for SAA, called the Due Regard Radar.
"Our latest Sense and Avoid test represents a major step forward for integrating RPA (remotely piloted aircraft) safely into domestic and international airspace," said Frank Pace, president, Aircraft Systems, GA-ASI. "Our proof-of-concept SAA system is now functional and ready for extensive flight testing with the FAA, NASA, and our industry partners."
GA-ASI said its functional flight test of its SAA system -- which includes automatic collision avoidance and a sensor fusion capability to give an on-ground UAV pilot a picture of air traffic -- was conducted in September in California using a Predator B.
DRR testing occurred at various locations across Southern California onboard a Beechcraft King Air in an attempt to detect and track multiple test aircraft across "the full Field-of-Regard, including General Aviation aircraft beyond 10 miles," the company said. "The tests are the first in an extensive flight test campaign designed to develop the Engineering Development Model DRR fully and make it ready for flight testing on Predator B."