Aerospace giant Honeywell is teaming up with anti-jamming expert InfiniDome to develop a new drone sensor capable of enhancing GPS resiliency when signals are weak or experiencing blockages. The new tech, which is being designed for defense and commercial users alike, is expected to hit markets during the first semester of next year.
New tech to protect drone GPS reception, and safeguard navigation when signals are cut
In announcing their partnership, Honeywell and InfinDome said the new drone sensor will be more effective in protecting GPS communications than existing tech. They also promise it will be lighter than extant rivals, permitting better performance, larger payloads, and shorter mission times in the wide range of drones and platforms it can be used with. The product will aim to achieve two primary objectives: Protect and enhance GPS signal reception against intentional or structural interference; and assume safe and effective navigation when GPS feeds are cut by safeguarding against collisions with objects or craft straying from programmed routes.
Drones being flown for all sorts of purposes rely on GPS signals for situational referencing and carrying out tasks assigned to particular locations. The importance of maintaining those feeds, therefore, has become critical to even the most ordinary operation. That dependability of GPS connectivity, however, can be compromised by surrounding structure density – like clusters of high rises, or flights below bridges – or complicated by the ever-proliferating number of craft in the skies at any given time.
GPS information flows become even more vital, meanwhile, in highly sensitive military or defense missions where precision can literally be a matter of life and death. The stakes in those rise further still when adversaries are actively working to deny that GPS reliability.
Honeywell and InfiniDome say their upcoming drone sensor will protect GPS signals against both inadvertent and intentional blockage, and provide maximal safety in navigation should those feeds fail.
“Intentional GPS jamming and spoofing incidents are on the rise, and this partnership will enable a rapid solution to this critical industry need,” said Matt Picchetti, Honeywell’s vice president and general manager of navigation and sensors in a communique about the new venture. “This partnership will create world-class solutions that will help accelerate the future of flight, especially in urban areas.”
Central to the new tech will be InfiniDome’s GPSDome system, which protects signals from being overpowered and alerts operators to cuts as it works to re-establish connections. InfiniDome says that application is the only non-military anti-jamming solution on the market. It will now be adapted to defense purposes using Honeywell’s expertise in developing their GPS drone sensor.
“In combining Honeywell’s best-in-class navigation sensors with leading-edge GPS resilience technology from InfiniDome, we’re working to develop a first-of-its-kind holistic solution built on tightly integrated layers of protection for all uses of navigation for unmanned air and ground vehicles,” said Omer Sharar, CEO of InfiniDome.
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