Germany: LS telcom’s Colibrex, in collaboration with FCS Flight Calibration Services GmbH has developed NavAidDrone, a drone-based system for navigational aid (NAVAID) inspections. The NavAidDrone is used for field measurements required for commissioning and regular maintenance of Instrument Landing Systems (ILS).
It will support Air Navigation Service Providers, NAVAID system manufacturers, and CNS (communication, navigation, surveillance) installation and maintenance service engineers. The system can also perform VOR and GBAS measurements with additional software included.
Measurement data, processed by the NavAidDrone, will now be available for areas that cannot be accessed by vehicles or conventional telescopic masts and for which measurement was therefore previously not possible.
For instance, the NavAidDrone measures localizer coverage with ease in a sector of ± 35° towards the antenna as it can be fully programmed to fly orbit paths. The airborne measurement system can also detect high-frequency oscillations of ILS signals caused by buildings, cranes or other construction work obstacles.
Luc Haeberlé, Managing Director of Colibrex explains, “The integrated high-performing FCS receiver guarantees extremely accurate measurement results. At the same time, the flexible airborne platform delivers a much higher volume of measurement points and results, compared to ground measurements.
Altogether, the measurement results obtained with the NavAidDrone are much more comprehensive and precise and improve ILS periodical measurements, adjustment and maintenance work substantially. At the same time, the use of NavAidDrone is more cost-effective and will also potentially reduce flight inspection hours.”
Rüdiger Schmidt, Managing Director of FCS, adds, “Drone-based ILS measurement opens the way to a new era in NAVAIDS inspection and FCS together with Colibrex are at the forefront of this exciting and complementary approach to flight inspection. Flight inspection and ground measurements should go hand in hand to ensure the best performance of our client’s NavAids. Our exciting new technology very effectively bridges the gap between the two worlds.”
The NavAidDrone unites the flight inspection and receiving and processing expertise of FCS Flight Calibration Services GmbH and Colibrex’s expertise in the design and international commercial operation of unmanned aircraft systems for radio frequency measurements.
Colibrex and FCS are planning a follow-up development and launch of the “RadarDrone” to perform field measurements for commissioning, trouble-shooting and regular maintenance of military and civil radar and surveillance systems, including primary (PR) and secondary (SSR/MSSR) radar installations.
The Air Navigation Service Providers and CNS maintenance staff, radar system manufacturers and radar service organisations will benefit from this new drone-based measurement technology.