MIAMI—The tech startup company VOTIX announced Nov. 1 that its software platform, which provides drone automation, orchestration and remote operation, has been selected by drone inspection company AviSight, which allowed it to achieve certification by the Federal Aviation Administration for beyond visual line of sight operations of drones for inspections at Shell USA Inc.
AviSight, working with VOTIX, will perform recurrent BVLOS inspections over Shell’s pipeline rights-of-ways in the United States using drones from Harris Aerial.
The certificate from the FAA is effective from May 5, 2022, to May 31, 2026, and includes the waiver to allow operation of unmanned aircrafts beyond the direct visual line of sight and the waiver to allow operation even when a visual observer may not be able see the unmanned aircraft. VOTIX gateway is installed onboard the drones and enables via cellular connectivity to fly the drones safely and securely over the internet with ultra-low latency from anywhere with full command and control and high-definition video streaming.
“VOTIX is disrupting drone operations, allowing any drone to be operated remotely through the cloud using cellular connectivity on the drone and in compliance with FAA regulations. VOTIX converts any drone into an automated platform capable of deploying drone programs at scale. VOTIX unlocks the full potential of drones,” Ed Boucas, the founder and CEO of VOTIX, said in a company release.
“With VOTIX, we have full control of the drone in real time over long distances and in difficult geographical conditions. With this capability, we can scale out our operations more efficiently than ever before, providing long-range BVLOS support to customers all over the country, while live streaming data to key decisions makers anywhere on the planet; a gamechanger in UAS operations,” Will O’Donnell, chief operating officer of AviSight, said in the release.
Reggie Wycoff, Shell’s aviation manager, said, “This waiver allows the remotely piloted aircraft system operator to use an existing cell phone network to maintain command and control of the aircraft. This FAA approval will allow for greater automation and scale of our inspections, reducing time and cost.”