The CAELUS Project (Care & Equity – Healthcare Logistics UAS Scotland) was designed to help improve healthcare access: but the project could also advance drone delivery and airspace management.
The CAELUS project, which began on December 1, 2020 and is scheduled to run until Spring 2022, is consortium led by AGS Airports that will develop and trial a national distribution network using drones to transport medical supplies including medicines, blood, and organs throughout Scotland.
The project will involve live drone flight trials, which means that the consortium will need to develop the ground infrastructure for charging, flight control systems, and to design pathways that ensure the drones can safely share airspace with civil aviation. The consortium will produce a digital blueprint of the drone delivery network with the potential to connect hospitals, pathology laboratories, distribution centers and doctors’ offices across Scotland.
ANRA Technologies is a major name in unmanned traffic management (UTM) and airspace management systems. ANRA is leading the development and architectural framework for the “Drone Logistics Network, system-of-systems digital demonstrator,” as described in a press release. ”It will feature digital representations of the Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAVs), the UAS Traffic Management (UTM) simulator, the energy system infrastructure, fleet management, and medical order fulfilment software. The Digital Demonstrator will provide the foundation for the Digital Twin for medical drone deliveries in Scotland.”
Drone delivery projects are happening all over the world right now. In terms of drone hardware, the technology is there: but robust systems that take into consideration existing air traffic, airspace regulations, deconfliction between aircraft, and community needs are still in development. “While there have been many drone delivery projects that have focused on the hardware, none have integrated all the necessary elements into one comprehensive solution,” says ANRA. “ANRA was sought to be a partner to leverage its SmartSkies™ UTM, SmartSkies™ DELIVERY, and MissionManager™ platform experience and technology as the foundation for digital demonstrator.”
Using the SmartSkies™ platform, the CAELUS project may be able to bring the goal of drone delivery networks integrated into existing airspace management systems closer to reality.
“ANRA leads the CAELUS technology package that will develop the Digital Demonstrator for the Drone Logistics Network. This really excites us since it will allow ANRA to collaborate with our partners, bringing our extensive experience in enabling airspace management, delivery, and fleet management for simulated drone delivery operations within a virtual environment followed by live flights,” said Amit Ganjoo, CEO of ANRA Technologies.
“At this very challenging time for the international aviation industry, it is a great testament to the UK’s drive and ambition that we have had such a strong response to the first funded Future Flight competition. The breadth, quality and creativity of the bids has been exceptional and the economic and social benefits offered are very significant. The projects we are now launching will position the UK strongly to drive the third revolution in aviation,” said Gary Cutts, Future Flight Challenge Director.
The CAELUS consortium includes the following companies:
- ANRA Technologies UK Ltd
- AGS Airports Limited
- Atkins Ltd
- The Drone Office Ltd
- Trax International Ltd
- uAvionix Ltd
- University of Strathclyde
- NATS (Services) Limited
- Schneider Electric (UK) Limited
- Avy – Drones for Good
- Connected Places Catapult
- DGP Intelsius Limited
- Leonardo MW Ltd
Miriam McNabb is the Editor-in-Chief of DRONELIFE and CEO of JobForDrones, a professional drone services marketplace, and a fascinated observer of the emerging drone industry and the regulatory environment for drones. Miriam has penned over 3,000 articles focused on the commercial drone space and is an international speaker and recognized figure in the industry. Miriam has a degree from the University of Chicago and over 20 years of experience in high tech sales and marketing for new technologies.
For drone industry consulting or writing, Email Miriam.
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