WASHINGTON, 24 June 2015. NASA is partnering with government and industry to test a system that would make it possible for unmanned aircraft systems (UAS) to fly routine operations in U.S. airspace. Engineers and officials at NASA, the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), General Atomics Aeronautical Systems Inc. (GA-ASI), and Honeywell International Inc. are flying a series of UAS tests through July at NASA's Armstrong Flight Research Center, Calif., under the Unmanned Aircraft Systems Integration in the National Airspace System (UAS-NAS) project.
NASA’s partnership with GA-ASI and Honeywell enable agency personnel “to collect flight test data that will aid in the development of standards necessary to safely integrate these aircraft into the National Airspace System," says Laurie Grindle, UAS-NAS project manager at Armstrong.
This series of tests builds upon the success of similar experiments conducted late last year that demonstrated a proof-of-concept sense-and-avoid system. The tests engage the core air traffic infrastructure and supporting software components through a live and virtual environment to demonstrate how an autonomous aircraft interacts with air traffic controllers and other air traffic.
"This is the first time that we are flight testing all of the technology developments from the project at the same time," Grindle adds.