Farada and Phoenix Systems initiate cooperation on development of autopilot system for certified UAVs
Farada and Phoenix Systems signed cooperation letter of intent aimed at development of the prototype of the autopilot system dedicated to certified UAVs. According to new EU regulations UAVs carrying out missions in the air space above the cities, missions related to the medical transport, transport of hazardous materials or people will be subject to certification by the authorized agencies. It creates perfect opportunity for usage of the Phoenix-RTOS open-source operating system for which a DO-178C certification package is currently being developed confirming compliance with the software development methodology required in aviation systems.
Cooperation of Polish high-tech companies will allow for creation of the new UAV, which can be certified by the European aviation safety agency EASA and will become a basis for the new type of services provided by the Farada Group. According to analytic reports, UAVs constitute one of the main Industry 5.0 operational technologies of key importance for the economy.
There are several popular open-source and open-hardware autopilot solutions available on the market. However, none of them the has the right architecture and the DO-178C certification package that would allow for aviation agency certification. Creation of a new open autopilot system with a scalable architecture based on Phoenix-RTOS to meet the high reliability requirements and using the potential of the Polish aviation community, including the world-renowned Polish universities educating excellent software and avionic engineers, may bring tangible results for the economy. We believe, together with Farada, that our cooperation is the beginning of the larger initiative to create a Polish autopilot system for certified UAVs to which other Polish manufacturers, universities and research institutes will join – comments Paweł Pisarczyk, CEO of Phoenix Systems.
We all learn to manage risk and raise standards to a higher level. Confidence in the equipment is the foundation and development of new autopilot, above which is a full power is the key to the reliability of the system, and thus confidence in our Farada. It is also easier to talk to insurance companies, Polish Air Navigation Services Agency or Civil Aviation Authority, having such a powerful tool in our hands – said Wojciech Lorenc, Technical Director in Farada Group.
The designed solution is to have an architecture with increased reliability, using multiple hardware components and voting mechanisms. By using the FPGA matrix it is possible to realize advanced functions (e.g. radio communication with the ground station) by means of software (software-defined) and significantly minimize the weight of the autopilot. The resource partitioning mechanism built into Phoenix-RTOS and resulting from its innovative architecture will be used to separate the autopilot software components with different reliability requirements. Partitioning is to allow for easy autopilot integration with other applications, e.g. autonomous control with the use of artificial intelligence and cloud computing or swarm cooperation mechanisms without the need for re-certification.
The Farada company specializes in the production of a unique in the global scale system of medical transport by air that preserves the cooling chain. Farada is an unmanned system based on a hybrid airframe system with a pusher propeller and four drive units in a multi-rotor system. The combination of two types of aircraft enables vertical take-off and landing (VTOL) and fast flight in airplane mode. Depending on the customer's needs, the main drive of the unmanned aerial vehicle is an economical and ecological electric motor or a hybrid combustion-electric engine that allows to achieve a Polish nationwide range.
Phoenix Systems sp. z o.o. is a company belonging to the Atende S.A. capital group, which created and develops the Phoenix-RTOS open operating system intended for Internet of Things edge devices (Edge-IoT). Phoenix-RTOS operating system is used in data concentrators and smart electricity and gas meters used in the Smart Utility market. The company is currently working on a version of the operating system for aviation applications (compliant with the requirements of DO-178C) and plans to implement the system in other sectors of the Internet of Things market - microsatellites, electric vehicles, modern medical devices, modern agriculture devices and new generation of control and measurement equipment.