Tuesday, September 6, 2016

AT&T and Qualcomm Put LTE on Drones

Qualcomm and AT&T will test Unmanned Aircraft Systems (UAS), or drones, on commercial 4G LTE networks and upcoming 5G networks.

The UAS trials, which begin later this month at Qualcomm's San Diego campus, will be based on the Qualcomm Snapdragon Flight, which offers high fidelity sensor processing, precise localization, autonomous visual navigation and 4K videography.

The team will look at coverage, signal, strength and mobility across network cells and how they function in flight. The goal of the trials and ongoing research is to help enable future drone operations, such as Beyond Visual Line of Sight (BVLOS), as regulations evolve to permit them. The ability to fly beyond an operator’s visual range could enable successful delivery, remote inspection and exploration. Wireless technology can bring many advantages to drones such as ubiquitous coverage, high-speed mobile support, robust security, high reliability and quality of service (QoS).

“The trial with a carrier with the reach and technology of AT&T is a significant step in the development of connectivity technologies for small unmanned aircraft systems (SUAS), including optimization of LTE networks and advancement of 5G technology for drones,” said Matt Grob, executive vice president and chief technology officer, Qualcomm Technologies, Inc. “Not only do we aim to analyze wide-scalable LTE optimization for safe, legal commercial SUAS use cases with beyond line-of-sight connectivity, but the results can help inform positive developments in drone regulations and 5G specifications as they pertain to wide-scale deployment of numerous drone use cases.”

"Many of the anticipated benefits of drones, including delivery, inspections and search and rescue will require a highly secure and reliable connection," said Chris Penrose, senior vice president, IoT Solutions, AT&T. “With a focus on both regulatory and commercial needs, LTE connectivity has the potential to deliver optimal flight plans, transmit flight clearances, track drone location and adjust flight routes in near real-time. Solving for the connectivity challenges of complex flight operations is an essential first step to enabling how drones will work in the future.”

http://about.att.com/story/qualcomm_and_att_to_trial_drones_on_cellular_network.html
http://www.qualcomm.com

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