14:48 GMT04 December 2020
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    US defense contractor Harris Corporation is partnering with the University of North Dakota to develop a Beyond Visual Line of Sight (BVLOS) Network for statewide and national long-range unmanned aviation operations, the company said in a press release on Tuesday.

    WASHINGTON (Sputnik) — The first unmanned aerial systems (UAS) network is aimed to provide a full range of aviation-grade services for safe and efficient UAS BVLOS operations, according to the statement.

    The focus of the project is accelerating long-range commercial uses of UAS and, ultimately, receiving Federal Aviation Administration and state regulatory approval, the release noted.

    "The use of unmanned aerial systems [UAS] for business operations – such as remotely monitoring power lines, farms, and rail tracks – represents the future for many organizations," Harris Electronic Systems, vice president and general manager, Commercial UAS Solutions, George Kirov explained in the release.

    The teaming partnership also includes the Northern Plains Unmanned Aerial Systems Test Site, the release added, and is being funded by a Research North Dakota grant awarded by the North Dakota Centers of Excellence Commission.

    The UAS BVLOS continues work undertaken in a prior award that saw research of a risk and safety assessment of UAS detect-and-avoid technology, according to the release.

    Harris seeks to build a UAS BVLOS network that covers all of North Dakota and hopes to expand the network across the United States, the release added.


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