Neuron Leverages Hedera Network for Drone Radar System
by DRONELIFE Staff Writer Ian M. Crosby
Aviation technology leader Neuron has employed the Hedera network, the leading enterprise-grade public ledger for the decentralized economy, in a trial sponsored by the UK government to demonstrate the ability to safely track the movements of military, enterprise, and government drones once out of visual line of sight. Held at Port Montrose in Scotland on 29 April 2021, and at Cranfield University during October 2021, the trials employed sensors to track the drones, recording flight data via the Hedera Consensus Service. Neuron’s goal is to offer a decentralised platform for mobility solutions such as drones, air taxis, autonomous vehicles and ground robots. It intends to achieve this by connecting sensors, vehicles and management systems to form a trusted network that can be used for data sharing, record keeping and possibly even decision making.
“Until now, drones have had limited benefit for governments and private enterprises, because they could not be flown safely out of line of sight and therefore could not be used for long distance deliveries, transport, or inspections,” said Neuron CCO Niall Greenwood. “With this trial, leveraging Hedera Consensus Service, we have made unmanned, long distance drone travel possible using safety-critical aviation infrastructure. Each flight creates millions of data points, which no other public ledger has been fast enough to log and correctly order. By leveraging the Hedera Consensus Service we can gather, store, and order this data immediately, giving us a real time ‘radar system’ for drones.”
The Drone Radar System
Neuron sensors monitor each drone’s location and direction. The Hedera Consensus Service then records the data from each drone flight on Hedera’s decentralized public ledger.
Sponsored by the UK government’s department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS), the trial was held as part of a series of tests to explore drone applications. Neuron’s trial succeeded in demonstrating the tracking of drone flights once out of sight, enabling the drones to fly longer distances safely and securely.
Neuron seeks to integrate its solution for all use cases, revolutionizing industries and supply chains in the UK and internationally. Use cases in healthcare include remote medical testing, transportation of medical supplies and equipment, and Covid-19 test kits, as demonstrated across the UK on-demand.
The Hedera Consensus Service is already in use in the UK by Everyware and the NHS to track the cold storage of COVID-19 vaccines, in the Middle East through MVC’s use for their track and trace system for pharmaceuticals in Bahrain, and in the US through its collaboration with SAFE and Acoer to offer COVID-19 track and trace systems for Arizona State University, E&I Cooperative, and major enterprises.
“Through this trial, Neuron has exhibited an extraordinary feat, allowing unmanned drones to safely exist in the sky,” said Mance Harmon, CEO and Co-Founder of Hedera Hashgraph. “The Hedera Consensus Service enables the use of drones to transport essential equipment across long distances, which has enormous implications in the fields of healthcare and national security in particular. We are excited to continue Hedera’s work in these sectors, particularly following our notable partnerships with Everyware and Hala Systems, and to see diverse industries realise the benefits of the Hedera Consensus Service.”
Ian attended Dominican University of California, where he received a BA in English in 2019. With a lifelong passion for writing and storytelling and a keen interest in technology, he is now contributing to DroneLife as a staff writer.