A Textron subsidiary demonstrated the potential of a multicopter unmanned aircraft to interoperate with a ground-based radar system in airspace navigation during a recent detect-and-avoid flight demonstration in Texas.
The Bell Autonomous Pod Transport completed a mission to fly beyond visual line of sight above a specialized test environment as part of NASA’s Systems Integration and Operationalization program, Textron said Wednesday.
NASA awarded Bell a cooperative agreement in 2018 to test commercial drone operations in conjunction with DAA and command and control systems.
The latest demo activity sought to validate APT’s ground radar integration and compliance with airspace requirements intended to serve as guide for the future adoption of Advanced Air Mobility platforms.
“Radar monitoring, whether airborne or ground-based, may become an important part of drone delivery, air taxi services and other aspects of the ever-expanding AAM ecosystem,” said Matt Holvey, director of intelligent systems at Bell.
The Texton subsidiary collaborated with Hillwood, Northwest Independent School District and Microsoft to carry out the flight demonstration.