Drones a Step Closer to Scaling in Canadian Cities Thanks to AirMatrix
AirMatrix is pleased to announce that it has undertaken a new project to accelerate research and development efforts of its platform to inform communications standards for commercial drone operations. AirMatrix is receiving advisory services and conditional research and development funding from the National Research Council of Canada Industrial Research Assistance Program (NRC IRAP) in support of the project.
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“As a smart city that embraces fresh ideas and experimentation, The City of Calgary is excited to support innovations in the drone space and is looking forward to supporting AirMatrix’s work to enable safe and efficient drone operations in Calgary while respecting citizen privacy”
Beginning in May, as part of The City of Calgary’s Living Labs program, participating drone pilots will begin utilizing the AirMatrix software platform inside an allocated zone within city boundaries to begin logistics and public services drone operations testing.
The deployment will ramp up over the course of 18 months, with the goal of building a live drone ecosystem in Calgary.
“As a smart city that embraces fresh ideas and experimentation, The City of Calgary is excited to support innovations in the drone space and is looking forward to supporting AirMatrix’s work to enable safe and efficient drone operations in Calgary while respecting citizen privacy,” said Monique Nesset, Smart Cities Program Manager, City of Calgary.
In collaboration with local drone operators, AirMatrix is now deploying its operator platform in Waterloo and Calgary. The data gathered will be anonymized and shared with Transport Canada to support the development of the standards required for the next phase of complex drone operations – where the industry will safely scale operations in urban environments nation-wide.
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“We’re ecstatic to be expanding in Waterloo and now deploying in Calgary. This is our first municipal deployment in Western Canada, having it in this city speaks to the sincere efforts taking place to increase the amount of innovative job opportunities, Alberta’s increased focus on clean energy options, and efforts to increase lifestyle benefits to residents; this is a step in the right direction, said Bashir Khan, CEO, AirMatrix. “Long term, we see this as a revenue generating economic engine for cities.”
“This region has a growing aerospace industry as well as an amazing history in communications, so it’s great to see innovative companies like AirMatrix commercializing technology built in Waterloo, scaling across Canada and Internationally,” said Rod Regier, the Commissioner of planning for the Region of Waterloo.
In 2022, drones are a step closer to becoming part of our day-to-day lives. Whether for having packages delivered to doorsteps and backyards, inspecting roofs, assessing infrastructure, monitoring construction sites, or for emergency services: drone use cases and commercial solutions have begun scaling world-wide. The challenges around regulations and technologies for flying in congested urban airspace, backyards, and over city streets have been developing quietly over the last few years. An innovative software company collaborating with regional, provincial, and federal governments in this space is AirMatrix, which maps and provides digital infrastructure for drones to safely navigate urban airspace.
The use of new technology within urban environments is rarely without hiccups. While some larger drones look closer to flying cars, they can be viewed as flying mobile devices, which naturally encounter unique challenges. Cities want to mitigate the risk of drones crashing into buildings due to imprecise GPS data, faulty LTE/5G connection or an unclear understanding of connectivity requirements for drones to safely operate in complex airspace from a telecommunications standpoint. Canadians can expect to see more drones in the sky in the coming years. AirMatrix has accelerated its ability to map cities, terrestrially and aerially mapping 100 cities globally over the next year to build skyways that enable advanced aerial mobility, including drones and EVTOL (Electric Vertical Take Off & Landing) aircraft.
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