According to The Verge, Airbus is currently testing a number of new automated technologies that should greatly improve flight safety and efficiency. These include the new automated technology with the company’s project name DragonFly. According to the aerospace giant, DragonFly integrates “ automated emergency diversion in cruise, automatic landing and taxi assistance “.
Also according to The Verge, the company is using the A350-1000 aircraft at Toulouse-Blagnac airport to test the new functions. Furthermore, this airport is a test site for Airbus. As for the experiment, it is led by Airbus UpNext. The latter is a subsidiary of Airbus whose role is to validate the new technology before it is implemented for the entire fleet. So you will see more aircraft with automated functions in the future if the tests go well.
Dragonfly: a hint of the future of technology
They didn’t choose the name Dragonfly by chance. In fact, the technology is intended to mimic the insect’s ability to recognize specific locations. They want to use this ability to help an air taxi fully autonomously before take-off. They also want to handle incidents where the crew members are unable to act, but also to perform fully automatic take-offs and landings.
Isabelle Lacaze, head of the DragonFly demonstrator, Airbus UpNext, said in a statement that “ these tests are one of many steps in the methodical search for technologies to further improve operations and enhance safety She also said that the systems being developed are inspired by biomimicry and the ability of dragonflies to recognize landmarks.
The tests performed are quite promising
The test results are positive so far. The test aircraft were able to recognize and respond to external conditions such as flight areas, certain terrains and weather conditions. The aircraft generated a new flight path on its own and then communicated the information to air traffic control and other airport officials.
The data from these tests is used by Airbus UpNext to ” preparing the next generation of computer vision-based algorithms to promote landing and taxi assistance Importantly, the company is working with lidar startup Luminar to build applications for the laser sensor’s 3D mapping capabilities.