The Air traffic control agency Luchtverkeersleiding Nederland (LVNL) in the Netherlands is working with Altitude Angel to power its GoDrone platform. The partnership will allow Dutch pilots to create an account and submit flight applications. It’s a process that was previously done over the phone or via email.

Drone pilots in the Netherlands have been able to commercially fly drones with ease since GoDrone was upgraded in April 2020.

The GoDrone app and website now allow pilots to plan out future flights with built-in tools, which provides information about the airspace and obstacles on the ground.

The upgraded app will also allow companies to create profiles with drone pilots and observers from within the app. Once a pilot submits their flight request, LVNL looks over it and gives it the go-ahead or doesn’t approve the flight. For now, pilots must still submit the flight plan on the LVNL website one hour before the flight.

Once a flight is approved and is in the system, other drone pilots can see the flight area on the map to make sure they stay away from the area or lookout for another drone while flying. The data will also be used to inform manned aircraft in the future.

Jurgen van Avermaete, general manager procedures at LVNL, said:

We’re excited by this upgrade in the GoDrone app and web portal. Certified drone pilots and organizations can register and create an account for free and in doing so are able to submit preliminary applications for drone flights in controlled airspace in the Netherlands. It is an important step in safely integrating drones in Dutch airspace.

GoDrone is free to download from the Apple Store and Google Play Store and can be accessed via www.godrone.nl.

Altitude Angel

The news comes after Altitude Angel announced its Drone Zone, which will be around 8 kilometers (5 miles) in length and 500 meters (0.3 miles) wide with enhanced detect-and-avoid capabilities. The drone zone will be operated and managed by Altitude Angel and have the ability to support fully automated drone flights beyond visual line-of-sight (BVLOS) from any drone manufacturer that complies with a few technical integrations without the need for specialist hardware.

The company also announced a partnership with Sky-Drones that allows its unmanned traffic management (UTM) platform, Pop-Up UTM, to be quickly set up when and where required, removing the need for building ground-based infrastructure. A few months ago, Altitude Angel welcomed its first partner to the program, Spark Mobility, and later added Sugu Drones.

The system will specifically be deployed where a Beyond Visual Line of Sight (BVLOS) drone flight is taking place and removes the need for infrastructure on the ground to be built. Pop-Up UTM also utilizes Inmarsat’s global network of satellites, meaning the system can be deployed around the world.

GuardianUTM allows software developers and drone manufacturers to access tools and data that are accurate, up-to-date, and relevant to better understand active and past drone missions. The platform helps drone pilots follow local flight rules and avoid mid-air collisions with a dynamic alert system. GuardianUTM also includes data from local air authorities such as altitude restrictions, No-Fly Zones, and NOTAMs to ensure the operation is as safe as possible.

Photo: Altitude Angel

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