Upwardly Mobile

The final SESAR JU Gulf of Finland (GOF) U-space demonstration has taken place in Helsinki, Finland, showing how integrated Air Traffic Management (ATM) and Unmanned Traffic Management (UTM) systems enable urban air mobility.

Volocopter performed a successful piloted air taxi flight at the Helsinki International Airport, fully integrated into both the ATM and UTM system, demonstrating how they can act in combination to enable a safe and efficient air taxi operation in urban environments, including airports.

The SESAR JU GOF U-space flight trial number seven demonstrated how ATM and UTM can jointly enable safe and efficient air taxi operation at an international airport.

“As air traffic continues to rise in number and kinds, especially with the arrival of unmanned aircraft and air taxis, the technology and rules for using especially Very Low-Level Airspace needs updating,” said project coordinator Maria Tamm from Estonian Air Navigation Services (EANS).

On 29 August, the demonstration at Helsinki airport showed that various systems are ready to safely and efficiently manage air taxi operations, their related services and subsequent interaction within existing aviation and airspace activities.

The successes of the recent GOF trials prove safe, integrated drone operations are possible, building upon established and existing systems in an open and interoperable environment.

A broad consortium of 19, members include three world-leading UTM technology vendors and two air navigation services providers, developing interoperability and data-sharing solutions which are aligned with SESAR’s overall U-space architecture.

In addition to air traffic management, large-scale drone use will rely on scalable radio communication systems (e.g. mobile networks) and weather information, which were also trialled in the project.

GOF U-Space will present the result of all trials at the beginning of October in Helsinki and Tallinn respectively. These events will be open for the public, the exact dates will be announced soon. This U-Space project is one of several research projects of the SESAR Joint Undertaking, which has received funding within the framework of the European Union’s Connection Europe Facility (CEF) programme.