Rockwell Collins enables airspace management during test flights for NASA's UAS Traffic Management program

Supports progress toward the safe integration of commercial UAS into the National Airspace System

April 30, 2018 Photo(s): By Rockwell Collins
During test flights for NASA's UAS Traffic Management program, Rockwell Collins demonstrated how its CNPC-100 Command and Control (C2) data links and webUASSM enables the safe operation of multiple unmanned aircraft in the air flying beyond visual line of sight.

Rockwell Collins recently participated in two weeks of critical testing for the NASA Unmanned Aircraft System (UAS) Traffic Management (UTM) program. As part of the test flights, Rockwell Collins served as the UAS Service Supplier (USS) for the safe management of a UAS flying beyond visual line of sight.

Rockwell Collins demonstrated how its CNPC-1000 Command and Control (C2) data links can be redundantly integrated to provide a fail-safe connection for operating the UAS. For example, if one link gets cut off, the operator still has a connection through another link to assure the safe operation of the UAS. The company also demonstrated how its webUASSM service can successfully manage multiple UAS in the air, redirecting aircraft set on conflicting flight paths as needed.

The test event was planned and orchestrated by the Northern Plains UAS Test Site staff under a NASA contract. The University of Iowa Operator Performance Laboratory (OPL), a key partner for Rockwell Collins, supported integration of the CNPC-1000 C2 links into its Pulse Aerospace Vapor 55 unmanned test vehicle and successfully piloted the aircraft throughout the test event.

"We're playing a significant role in the research and development of UTM interoperability strategies needed to successfully merge UAS operation into the National Airspace System," said Boe Svatek, program director, UAS Strategic Programs for Rockwell Collins. "These recent test flights demonstrate that we're able to leverage safe and proven flight operations management capabilities from our ARINC heritage to ultimately enable airspace integration of all aircraft, traditional and new."