October 13, 2011

Contract Award: Thales Alenia Space to investigate a satellite based command and control for UAVs

References: Thales Alenia Space (1)

News Report

As announced in a recent press release, Thales Alenia Space, the joint venture between Thales and Finmeccanica, has won a contract from the European Space Agency (ESA) to lead a nine-month study regarding satellite communications solutions for Unmanned Aircraft Systems, named ESPRIT.

As the leader of an industrial consortium for ESPRIT, Thales Alenia Space will study solutions at both spectrum and system levels. To cover all aspects of the domain, its team includes major actors in the aeronautical satellite communications, UAS, space systems and regulatory issues.

The Initiative

The ESPRIT study (Emerging system concepts for UAS command & control via satellite) will focus on the provision of communication capacity for Command & Control links to Unmanned Aircraft Vehicles flying through civilian airspace. As of today, UAVs are operated exclusively in so-called “segregated airspace” where they do not interfere with non-military aircraft.

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