Global UAV successfully flew an unmanned aircraft system (UAS) using the 4G cellular network for command and control and flight data telemetry feedback.
NOVAerial Robotics Inc., the company’s research & development, engineering and manufacturing division, completed the test flights, which included multiple takeoffs and landings, according to a news release. Using one of NOVAerial’s internal research and development multicopter drone platforms, they were also able to execute an autonomous flight plan.
The ability to operate a drone using a 4G cellular network offers a more robust command and control datalink telemetry link to the operational personnel and pilot on the ground, according to the release. The technology makes it possible for a pilot at an operations center to launch, fly and land a drone that has cellular network coverage, as well as in urban areas where structures can obstruct radio communications.
The company will continue to develop this technology and plans to integrate it as an option for NOVAerial drones.
“The ability to fly drones on the back of the existing cellular network is a large step forward for both consumer and commercial drone applications worldwide,” Global UAV CEO and Director Michael Burns said. “Currently, UAVs fly utilizing a direct radio link with the pilot ground station. Using the cellular network as a high bandwidth datalink will provide increased operational range for many applications such as drone surveillance, delivery, search and rescue and emergency response flights in both urban and rural areas. This technology opens the door to a range of new drone applications that have not been possible until now.”