Reducing need for chase planes to provide constant visual surveillance during flight
Grand Sky Airfield Operations has selected Harris to provide an advanced solution to support beyond-visual-line-of-sight (BVLOS) unmanned aerial systems (UAS) flight operations – reducing the need for chase planes to provide constant visual surveillance during flight.
Harris will provide a customised RangeVue sense and avoid solution that delivers real-time situational awareness of surrounding unmanned and manned aircraft traffic, with reliable multi-sensor surveillance for cooperative and non-cooperative vehicles. The solution will cover the 217-acre unmanned aircraft business and aviation park located on Grand Forks Air Force Base, North Dakota.
It will enhance Grand Sky’s infrastructure for safe and efficient BVLOS UAS operations and testing, ensuring the FAA’s stringent safety requirements are met and eliminating the need for expensive chase planes to track UAS entering, exiting or operating within Grand Sky’s 60 nautical-mile radius airspace.
Harris’ Grand Sky solution will combine available surveillance sources – including Grand Forks AFB’s radar feed, locally installed ADS-B Xtend and FAA NextGen surveillance data – into a single stream that offers superior area coverage and airspace visualization for drone operators. Xtend supplements the FAA’s existing ADS-B nationwide network operated by Harris, which provides precise and reliable satellite-based surveillance for the nation’s air traffic control system.
The Grand Sky project continues Harris’ commitment to support UAS activities in the state of North Dakota. In February, Harris signed an agreement with Northern Plains UAS Test Site and the University of North Dakota to develop a first-of-its-kind BVLOS operations network. Both efforts will ensure the development of standards for UAS integration into the national airspace, enabled by an aviation-grade BVLOS UAS network that supports safe and efficient UAS operations and testing.