Sunday, January 05, 2020

Drone delivered: Beyond visual range test flights to commence soon

New Delhi: India will soon conduct 'Beyond Visual Line of Sight' (BVLOS) test flights of drone systems for the creation of last mile air delivery connectivity in the country.
 The move, according to industry insiders, is seen as a major breakthrough for the evolution of the Unmanned Aircraft Systems' (UAS) eco-system in India. The objective of the experimental BVLOS flights in controlled conditions for a period of at least two months is to prepare a 'Proof of Concept' for safe operations.
 If successful, and found safe, a new policy framework for the long-range BVLOS drone operations will be drafted. The initial step of allowing long-range test flights is expected to pave the way for UAS to delivery medicines and other articles, such as food items, in a faster manner across the country. Besides, these systems can become life savers in the rural and far flung areas to deliver first aid and other essentials.
 Other opportunities arising from BVLOS UAS operations at low altitudes are expected to provide cost-effective services such as surveying, photography and precision agriculture. The BVLOS experiments will be conducted in various airspaces across the country which have been identified by the Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA) and the Airports Authority of India (AAI).
 These experiments will be conducted by selected consortium using different types of 'Remotely Piloted Aircraft System' models. Consequently, the results of the long-range test flights will be assessed by the BVLOS Experiment Assessment & Monitoring committee. "The upper limit of the identified airspace is 400 ft AGL. These experiments are likely to start from end of January," a senior DGAC official told.
 04/01/20 IANS/Economic Times
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