When the U.S. Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) and U.S. Department of Transportation (USDOT) sought public and private partners across the country to help craft rules to enable new applications of drones, Ainstein answered the call.
This call came in the form of the UAS Integration Pilot Program, or IPP. The Kansas Department of Transportation (KDOT) is one of only 10 government agencies across the U.S. selected by the FAA and USDOT as a regional testing ground for exciting new applications of and business models for drone technologies.
Now, Ainstein is excited to partner with KDOT, FAA, USDOT, and other government agencies and private sector entities to push the envelope on new drone applications, such as critical infrastructure inspection, precision agriculture, and more.
Currently, night time flight of drones, flight above people, and flights beyond visual line of sight (BVLOS) are generally prohibited by FAA rules for safety and privacy reasons. However, there is strong interest in crafting reasonable rules to allow use of drones under such conditions, because doing so could enable new drone applications such as package delivery, precision agriculture, emergency management and rescue, infrastructure inspection and management, and much more.
For policymakers and regulators to have confidence that such applications of drone technology can be performed safely and reliably, products that can offer autopilot and collision avoidance capabilities are a necessary ingredient. Ainstein’s advanced radar technologies are a critical enabler of such applications.
For example, Ainstein’s radar altimeter products allow drones to maintain a constant above ground and above crop canopy elevation. This capability is critical for precision agriculture applications monitoring crop health. Because terrain undulates up and down, with precision radar altimeter technologies like those from Ainstein, a drone equipped with special imaging sensors and software can be used to fly over an apple orchard and accurately identify which trees are at greatest risk of a pest-borne disease outbreak.
Ainstein has new products currently under development to provide drone autopilot and collision avoidance capabilities, too. One real-world challenge for drone autopilots is how to deal with unexpected obstacles such as power lines, trees, or even another drone. Ainstein’s autopilot and collision avoidance solutions deal elegantly with these challenges by integrating some of the world’s most powerful on-board processing capability and obstacle detection to allow a drone to make optimal flight decisions quickly.
The inclusion of Ainstein in the UAS IPP is additional recognition by the nation’s leading aviation and drone policy making bodies of the key role that reliable drone components have to play generally in enabling next generation applications of drones, and the high quality of Ainstein’s specifically. Dr. Zongbo Wang, Ainstein’s CEO says “Selection of Ainstein for inclusion in the IPP serves as further validation of our company’s leadership in design of advanced radar technology. We’re thrilled to embark on additional integration of Ainstein’s technologies into real-world applications of drones, while also helping to shape the conversation that will form common sense regulation to enable truly autonomous use of drones in the U.S.”
Based in Lawrence, Kansas and Beijing, China, Ainstein is a leader in the design of advanced radar technologies for drone, automotive, industrial measurements, and smart building and smart city applications, among others.