CNO Beyond Program obtains FAA approval for Beyond Visual Line of Sight operations with uAvionix Installation.

CNO Beyond Program obtains FAA approval for Beyond Visual Line of Sight operations with uAvionix Installation.

February 10, 2023

Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) approved the Choctaw Nation of Oklahoma (CNO) Beyond Program for Beyond Visual Line of Sight (BVLOS) operations using uAvionix SkyLine managed C2 and Detect and Avoid sensors, uAvionix announced today. This marks the waiver of BVLOS by the FAA for combining uAvionix SkyLine software and hardware. It allows drone pilots operating at the CNO range to contact only an Electronic Observer while meeting requirements to remain well-clear of the crewed aircraft while the aircraft that is uncrewed is out of the pilot’s visual range of sight.

“This approval is a major milestone for the Choctaw Nation’s Emerging Aviation Technology Center,” said the Executive Director of Advanced Technology Initiatives for the Choctaw Nation of Oklahoma, James Grimsley. “With this approval, we achieved a major milestone in the FAA Beyond program by enabling BVLOS test flights for our partners and customers by leveraging the permanently deployed hardware and software from uAvionix.”

The waiver approval signifies that uAvionix and the CNO have successfully demonstrated to the FAA that the aircraft detect void systems and procedures, and the safety threshold has been met by the control network for operations in the national airspace. Key components of the system deployed on the UAS Test Range include the uAvionix SkyLine C2 management platform and pingStation3 dual-mode ADS-B receivers. The DeTect Harrier radar is integrated into the SkyLine C2 management platform as part of the surveillance layer and used in controlling several CNO and uAvionix-owned eVTOL aircraft through the uAvionix muLTElink and SkyLink series of C2 radios.

“Successfully demonstrating safe and controlled Beyond Visual Line of Sight operations is critical to meet the growing demand for the use of drones in everything from package delivery to search and rescue operations,” adds Marcus Hartman, Aviation Operations Manager for CNO. “Our collaboration with uAvionix establishes the Advanced Technology Center and the FAA Beyond program as key leaders for this important work.”

The Skyline C2 product ecosystem and muLTElink radio, a single low-SWaP avionic device, enable dynamic selection of the best radio link between LTE, ISM, aviation-protected C Band, and SATCOM. All while presenting the real-time monitoring of system health and visualization of various integration DAA sensors to the end user.

According to Stratview Research, Avionics, and radio systems continue to advance at a rapid pace in the aviation industry. The demand for advanced test solutions is driven by various factors such as high-speed and high-bandwidth avionics.  It is estimated that the market for avionics and radio test is forecasted to grow at an impressive rate over the next five years to reach an estimated value of US$ 2.1 billion in the coming years.

Market Highlights

In recent years, the market is witnessing a gradual consolidation as major players are acquiring other players to strengthen their product portfolio and expand their geographical reach. For instance, in 2019, Astronics Corporation acquired Freedom Communication Technologies to strengthen its position in the radio test market. Similarly, in 2018; Viavi Solutions, Inc. acquired Cobham’s AvComm (Advanced Communication and connectivity) business unit to diversify its operation into the military, public safety, and avionics test markets.

The demand for test and measurement equipment in the aerospace industry has been vigorous over the past few years whose credit goes to the excellent organic growth of both civil as well as military aviation coupled with ongoing advancements in technologies, necessitating the importance of equipment. The aerospace & defense industry has been one of the biggest users of test and measurement equipment in which avionics and test equipment play a major role. It is estimated that the market for avionics and radio test is forecasted to grow at an impressive rate over the next five years to reach an estimated value of US$ 2.1 billion in 2025.

Author : Harshad

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