Echodyne EchoFlight Radar: Revolutionizing BVLOS Flight with AiRanger

Echodyne's radar technology powers the first FAA-approved commercial unmanned aircraft for critical infrastructure surveillance.

Echodyne has announced that its EchoFlight radar is now integrated into American Aerospace Technologies, Inc.'s (AATI) AiRanger aircraft. This integration has helped AiRanger secure a groundbreaking waiver from the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) for commercial Beyond Visual Line-of-Sight (BVLOS) flight operations. This approval marks a significant milestone in unmanned aviation, showcasing the importance of radar technology in achieving safe and efficient BVLOS operations.

First-of-Its-Kind BVLOS Aircraft

The AiRanger has become the first unmanned aircraft system (UAS) to meet industry consensus standards for the detect-and-avoid (DAA) system. This system is crucial for adhering to aircraft right-of-way rules during BVLOS operations, highlighting the advanced situational awareness capabilities provided by Echodyne's EchoFlight radar. David Yoel, CEO of AATI, praised Echodyne's support, stating, “Echodyne's EchoFlight radar provides unparalleled data fidelity and precision, and this first-of-its-kind waiver is evidence of radar's role in providing the situational awareness necessary for successful detect-and-avoid systems.”

Radar's Role in Safety

The AiRanger's approval underscores radar's pivotal role in providing the situational awareness necessary for BVLOS operations. EchoFlight's integration into the AiRanger involves mounting radar pods on each wing, offering extensive visibility to meet operational performance standards. This capability allows the DAA system to detect and track both cooperative and non-cooperative aircraft, ensuring enough time and information to take avoidance measures and maintain safety.

Eben Frankenberg, CEO at Echodyne, remarked, “The integration of our EchoFlight radar into the AiRanger is one critical piece of many in the puzzle to create the safety case for BVLOS flight operation.”

Protecting Critical Infrastructure

The first deployment of the AiRanger will focus on critical infrastructure patrol, particularly pipeline surveillance. This operation is vital for detecting and reporting potential hazards, ensuring pipeline integrity, and enabling quick responses to leaks or other issues. The AiRanger, weighing 220 pounds, can fly for 12 hours and cover up to 750 miles at altitudes up to 12,000 feet. This capability makes it a powerful tool for maintaining the safety and security of essential infrastructure.

Echodyne Echoflight Radar: Revolutionizing Bvlos Flight With Airanger 2

Echodyne's EchoFlight radar has been instrumental in achieving the first FAA-approved commercial BVLOS operation, marking a significant advancement in unmanned aviation. The AiRanger's capabilities demonstrate the potential for radar technology to enhance the safety and efficiency of critical infrastructure surveillance and other BVLOS applications.

DroneXL's Take

This FAA approval is a significant step forward for the commercial , paving the way for more widespread BVLOS operations. The integration of Echodyne's EchoFlight radar into the AiRanger not only highlights the importance of advanced radar technology in ensuring safety but also sets a precedent for future innovations in unmanned aviation. As the industry continues to evolve, we can expect to see more sophisticated and capable systems enhancing the safety and efficiency of various commercial applications.


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Haye Kesteloo
Haye Kesteloo

Haye Kesteloo is the Editor in Chief and Founder of DroneXL.co, where he covers all drone-related news, DJI rumors and writes drone reviews, and EVXL.co, for all news related to electric vehicles. He is also a co-host of the PiXL Drone Show on YouTube and other podcast platforms. Haye can be reached at haye @ dronexl.co or @hayekesteloo.

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