NASA logoUp to 24 UAVs are planned to fly simultaneously at six FAA designated test sites across the U.S. on April 19, in the biggest test yet of NASA’s UAV traffic management (UTM) system.

Using UTM, the flights will be monitored remotely from NASA Ames Research Center at Moffett Field, California.

“Participating UAS operators at the six sites will enter their planned flight operations and the UTM research platform will check for conflicts, accept or reject the flight plans and notify the users,” NASA says.

UTM Build

The national campaign will test Build 1 of UTM, which enables UAV operators to reserve volumes of airspace, the system checking for conflicts with airspace restrictions and other users and pushing notifications of changes to users.

MAAP says the Virginia Tech team will also demonstrate a self-contained telemetry box that can allow any aircraft to interface with the central traffic management platform, avoiding the need to develop a separate interface for each type of software used by unmanned vehicles.

This is going to be a big day. Nominally NASA is six to seven months behind schedule but I suspect Build 1 involved a lot of the heavy lifting. We’ll find out soon enough. The graphic is linked to the SlideShare deck.


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