AirMap partners with DJI and 3DR to assist drone pilots

By Patrick C. Miller | November 19, 2015

California-based AirMap—a provider of airspace information and services for unmanned aerial systems (UAS)—will partner with major drone manufactures DJI and 3DR to improve safety and situational awareness for operators.

Ben Marcus, AirMap co-founder and CEO, said that starting in December, the company will bring accurate, real-time airspace information to millions of drone fliers around the world, enabling DJI and 3DR customers to fly in areas they know are safe.

“Drones are a powerful, important and increasingly popular technology, and we want to make it easy for people to fly them safely,” Marcus said. “We collaborate with industry leaders to give drone users the information they need to make decisions about where to fly.”

AirMap said its airspace data meets the same standards set for the information used by airline and general aviation pilots. According to Marcus, the data includes airports, controlled airspace, restricted airspace, temporary flight restrictions (TFRs) and advisory information for locations such as hospitals, schools, prisons, power plants and other potentially sensitive areas.

The services are delivered through an application that enables manufacturers to query airspace data by sending AirMap the position of a drone. Marcus said that in a fraction of a second, airspace information about the relevant area is sent back, answering such questions as whether it’s safe to fly or there are heliports or other facilities of concern nearby.

Chris Anderson, 3DR CEO, said that while the company has made its Solo drones easy to fly, providing operators with the AirMap data improves safety.

“Supplementing the Solo app with AirMap’s robust and reliable real-time airspace information allows us to increase education with a seamless and enjoyable drone experience., he said.

AirMap software continually pulls and compiles airspace information and displays the restricted, warning and informational areas on a map. 3DR said if Solo users open their app in a restricted area, they’ll see a warning. Users can then tap the warning to bring up a map that displays any airspace information in the area. This airspace information includes real-time Temporary Flight Restrictions that may be established in the areas around wildfires, major sporting events and other sensitive places.

To support the many innovators working on drone applications, AirMap also offers a Software Development Kit (SDK) to assist those building drone-related apps that bring airspace information to end-users.

Marcus said that helping drone operators understand where it’s safe to fly is a foundational step in building the future low-altitude traffic management system.

 

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