As drone usage increases worldwide, the U.K. is the first to initiate a designated drone super-highway to the west of London, reports UAS Magazine. Altitude Angel, a provider of UTM (Unmanned Traffic Management) software, is overseeing the project known as the “Arrow Drone Zone.” The drones will be able to fly in a corridor of unrestricted airspace approximately five miles long and 546 yards wide. Infrastructure along the corridor will help the drones navigate safely without running into each other.
Altitude Angel says Project Arrow will be available to handle fully automated drone flights beyond visual line-of-sight (BVLOS). Before entering the corridor, a drone company will need to complete a series of basic technical integrations which will allow the drones to avoid each other without adding extra internal hardware to the drone.
Altitude Angel’s UTM platform, GuardianUTM O/S, will track and monitor the drones. It will also communicate with infrastructure both on the ground and in the air to provide automated navigation for drones flying within the Arrow Drone Zone, in addition to managing pre-flight authorizations and automatic separation assurance.
“Project Arrow and Arrow Drone Zones open the door to the next level in the evolution of UTM and automated drone operations. The size of this step cannot be underestimated: BVLOS automated flight in unrestricted airspace is a very significant barrier to overcome in order to realize the vision of mass-commercial drone usage,” said Richard Park, Altitude Angel CEO and founder. He said they hope to support organizations and businesses worldwide to enable automated drone flights and manned aviation to operate safely side-by-side through the implementation of Arrow Drone Zones.