Today, national authorities from around the globe saw dozens of drones maneuvering safely throughout Switzerland, utilizing U-space services powered by skyguide and the AirMap platform.
The demonstration took place in Switzerland for many international representatives in Zurich as part of the Drone Innovators Network event, hosted by the World Economic Forum with the support of the Federal Department of the Environment, Transport, Energy and Communications and Presence Switzerland.
In the demonstration, dozens of drones performed a wide variety of commercial tasks, including medical supply delivery and weather monitoring, across the entire country of Switzerland. Each drone was connected to skyguide, which is powered by AirMap technology, to receive live information about the airspace structure and traffic awareness. Simultaneously, the drones published live positioning and flight path information to an air traffic management dashboard to actively work in de-conflicting the airspace. The dashboard visualized fully integrated traffic stream for manned and unmanned aircraft.
More than 26 drone industry partners participated in the demonstration, including Matternet, Parrot, senseFly, Swiss Post, and Swisscom, which are already being used in many different businesses applications today. Because the AirMap platform is open and drone-agnostic, any drone can easily connect to Swiss U-space, without any extra hardware.
“Today skyguide and AirMap showed that UTM services are ready to be deployed and can support live commercial drone services throughout Switzerland, and eventually across Europe,” said AirMap co-founder and chairman Ben Marcus. “It is an exciting prospect for Europe’s growing community of drone operators and sets a clear path that others can now follow.”
The successful demonstration shows exciting progress for U-space in Switzerland. Earlier this year, skyguide and AirMap announced that they would join forces to develop Europe’s first national drone traffic management system. Referred to as U-space, skyguide’s Swiss national drone traffic management system is now ready to be implemented across Switzerland to provide drones with safe and reliable access to Swiss skies.
“Last September, we successfully demonstrated U-space concepts with 3 flights in the city of Geneva,” said Alex Bristol, CEO of skyguide. “Today, we deployed nationwide U-space services showing live manned and unmanned traffic for dozens of drone use cases across Switzerland. This tremendous progress proves that U-space facilitates a safe and secure airspace system and that Switzerland is leading the way in drone innovation.”
With U-space to support the country’s thriving community of drone companies, Switzerland is fast becoming the Home of Drones. The country also hosts the world’s first autonomous drone delivery network, located in Zürich. Since 2013, drone flight requests at skyguide have multiplied tenfold.
AirMap also announced today that it has opened an office in Zurich and will build a team there to work closely with skyguide to support Switzerland’s drone ecosystem through our UTM technology, global market experience, and thought leadership.
AirMap is powering drone flights globally and bringing complex UTM services to markets not only in Switzerland but also the United States, New Zealand, and Japan.