Estonian Air Navigation Services (EANS) has been working with Frequentis to create an environment where drones and civil aviation can coexist in the shared airspace. The drone market is already growing rapidly and uncrewed aerial vehicles (UAV) are used for everyday activities. This requires a user-system for both crewed and uncrewed traffic, and all this with flight safety in mind.

“One of our strategic goals is to develop a U-space framework and to support the state activities on advancing the unmanned aviation sector in Estonia. EANS will take the role as a single common information services (CIS) provider in Estonia, which offers a secure, open protocol for data exchange between all stakeholders, enabling a competitive, innovative, and open market for U-space service provision,” says EANS head of business development Teve Rahula.

“This will enable the drone services to thrive, as we are able to increase efficient and safe access to airspace. For this reason, EANS is collaborating with Frequentis to realise the implementation of U-space in Estonia to advance the emerging uncrewed traffic management (UTM) UTM ecosystem.”

The Cloud-based UTM system is provided as a managed service in the Frequentis Cloud environment, allowing validation of use cases and business cases. The Cloud architecture also enables a fully optimised deployment process, without the need for on-site activities. The UTM system complies with the requirements of the Commission Implementing Regulation (EU) 2021/664 (draft) on a regulatory framework for the U-space.

“The Frequentis CIS platform allows the integration of all airspace users on one single platform, providing a single source of truth and real-time situational awareness for air traffic controllers, drone operators, and service providers. This integration allows both crewed flights and drones to safely share the same airspace, to see airspace restrictions and flight rules, file flight plans, and receive updates from air traffic controllers in real time. This is what is needed for the safe integration of drones into the aviation ecosystem,” says Frequentis new business development vice-president Guenter Graf.

Frequentis has been working together with EANS and other stakeholders in the Nordic and Baltic region on the SESAR GOF and GOF 2.0 projects, exploring the safe integration of drones in the Gulf of Finland, trailing and validating use cases in line with U-space regulatory frameworks.