At the end of August 2022, the Uspace4UAM project, which ultimately aims to create an effective system for the use of drones in the urban area of the EU, was presented in Rzeszów, Poland.
The Uspace4UAM project is an element of the implementation of the Urban Air Mobility (UAM) concept in the EU. The project is commissioned by the EU body SESAR Joint Undertaking, which implements solutions supporting sustainable aviation. Drone flights over Poland therefore contribute to the development of EU-wide regulations and systems that will allow an increased number of flights by aircraft – including drones – in EU skies in the coming years, while improving safety.
“Uspace4UAM is successfully demonstrating an important piece of the UAM puzzle by flying an innovative drone deployment system, which has a clear and sought-after business case,” said SESAR Joint Undertaking representative Robin Garrity during the presentation. “By managing these flights with a highly capable U-space system the project clearly shows how selected Urban Air Mobility operations could be safely managed alongside manned aviation.”
The effects of many months of work on the project were presented at the DemoDay in Rzeszów. The event was held under the patronage of the mayor of the city, which emphasizes the importance of such projects from the point of view of the needs of municipal services. Among the guests and speakers were experts from the aviation and technology sectors, as well as representatives of public and emergency services and the city of Rzeszów.
“In Rzeszów, we saw great interest in our project from the public services, especially the fire brigades, which shows the importance of drone systems in the area of rescue and public monitoring,” said Jiri Ilcik from Honeywell, the project consortium leader. “We feel excited that we are responsible for and we are running such an important project from the point of view of the use of drones in public space in European Union cities.”
Test flights over Poland were carried out for three use cases of drones in public service in cities: to provide emergency services with aerial monitoring from accident sites, to take a series of ortho- and photogrammetric photos for the needs of public institutions, and to transport AED defibrillators.
The key element of the demonstration was the integration within the U-Space Service Provider architecture designed by Altitude Angel, the consortium member, that enables safe and efficient drone operations by supporting the operator in flight planning, automating flight approval process and supervising ongoing flights.
The project is being implemented in Poland, the Czech Republic, Great Britain, Germany, Austria and Spain. The Polish partner of the consortium is the Rzeszów-based company Dronehub, which operates flights under the Uspace4UAM project.
“Thanks to these flights, Dronehub engineers can properly adjust the technology – both the drones and software – to the real city conditions and to the needs of public services,” said CEO and founder of Dronehub, Vadym Melnyk. “Over a year of work on this project allows us to develop recommendations and conclusions that will contribute to the creation of an effective system of using drones by cities throughout the EU.”
In addition to Dronehub and Honeywell, the Uspace4UAM consortium also includes: Air Navigation Services of the Czech Republic, Altitude Angel, Austro Control, CATEC, CRIDA, DLR, ENAIRE, Lilium, TECNALIA, UpVision and Vertical Aerospace. The project started in February 2021 and will end in December 2022.