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Press Release


A BIG STEP INTO THE DRONE FUTURE

The Department of Air Transport of the Faculty of Transportation Sciences at the Czech Technical University in Prague, together with Air Navigation Services of the Czech Republic, successfully completed the FUTURE project in 2023. The project was funded with state support from the Technology Agency of the Czech Republic and Ministry of Transport of the Czech Republic under the Doprava 2020+ Program. The project aimed to explore possibilities and propose the implementation of the U-space* concept in the Czech Republic. With an implementation of U-space, achieved results will significantly contribute to safe and beneficial operation of drones in the Czech airspace.

The U-space concept describes the creation of an air traffic management system that includes both conventional air transport and unmanned aircraft systems operations. Creating an environment that allows the integration of these two different types of air transport and enables safe operations.

The FUTURE project spanned a duration of 3.5 years during which the situation in the Czech Republic and specific needs of its environment were thoroughly explored.

One of the project's results is the proposal for the first drone testing site in the Czech Republic. Within the project, suitable locations were identified, taking into account limitations to minimize negative impacts on residents living in the operational area.

Within the FUTURE project, a methodology for U-space Airspace Assessment has been outlined. That includes how drones and their operation can be evaluated in the future. In this analysis, risks associated with the possibility of drone crashes, as well as potential noise pollution, visual clutter, and environmental impact, are considered. The main purpose is to prevent drone operations that could have negative impacts mainly on city residents. Additionally, the project focused on U-space services and their relationships among relevant entities or a methodology capable of assessing whether the creation of U-space in defined areas is necessary or not.

„The project has provided all necessary basis for possibility of practical implementation of U-space and relevant European regulation in the Czech Republic,“ says the principal investigator Jakub Kraus, Head of the Department of Air Transport of the Faculty of Transportation Sciences at the Czech Technical University in Prague.

The participation of the Air Navigation Sevices of the Czech Republic allowed the exploration of options for displaying information about unmanned operations to the air traffic controllers. „Currently we plan to use the project outputs to design new solutions. These include defining interactions between U-space and our operational stations or requirements which must be met by systems to ensure advanced drone operations,“ says Radek Hodač, Head of Unmanned Systems Integration Office at ANS CR.

Project presents possible options for integrating the display of relevant information into existing systems used in air traffic control. Selected methods were then tested directly on air traffic control simulators.

*The U-space concept can be explained as a set of new services and specific procedures. It represents a new category of airspace where these services will be provided. Its purpose it to ensure safe and efficient access to airspace for drones and other participants in air traffic.
Contact for more information :
Richard Klíma, Air Navigation Services of the Czech Republic,
e-mail: klima@ans.cz, phone: +420 220 37 2093, 724 172 186,
www.rlp.cz