26 October, 2015 By Beth Stevenson - FG
London - In an effort to further test the integration of unmanned air vehicles (UAVs) in European airspace, European Commission testing saw the SAGEM Patroller carry out flight trials in homeland security scenarios in Portugal.
Through the Commission’s airborne information for emergency situation awareness and monitoring – or Airbeam – project, the Patroller operated in civil airspace from the Beja air base in Portugal from 5-8 October, using homeland security scenarios as defined by the Portuguese national guard and air force. The aim of the project is to develop a management system for large-scale crises using UAVs, balloons and satellites, and these operational demonstrations serve to validate that system. “The Patroller played a full role in all of these events, which provided full-scale simulations of homeland security missions,” SAGEM says. This included the surveillance of high-value sites as well as missions entailing population risk management. “In fact, the drone’s capabilities turned out to have a very practical, and unexpected purpose, since during one of its flights the Patroller detected a fire in the country at a range of more than 20km,” SAGEM added. “The information on this situation that it transmitted in real time helped coordinate the response teams.”