PrecisionHawk, an IU-funded venture that deploys unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) to collect and analyze data for various commercial users, announced it has entered an agreement with the Federal Aviation Administration to advance research concerning the use of UAVs in rural areas. The partnership falls under the Pathfinder program established by the FAA to help safely integrate UAVs into the nation’s airspace. The program includes CNN and BNSF Railway, both prospective users of UAV technology, and examines beyond line-of-sight flying under certain conditions.
Earlier this year, PrecisionHawk — which maintains part of its workforce in Noblesville and counts the Innovate Indiana Fund among its investors — launched a prototype called LATAS (Low Altitude Tracking and Avoidance System). LATAS is a hardware platform that weighs less than one-quarter of a pound (100 grams) and is designed to work on airframes that range from large military aircraft to small quadcopters that hobbyists use. PrecisionHawk currently is working with NASA to develop a traffic management system for such aircraft.
Read more about the effort here: