First pilot application of Waterairport safety inspection in Greece by utilising Drones

On Monday, November 21, the Governor of the Hellenic Civil Aviation Authority (HCAA), Dr. Christos Tsitouras, met with the head of the General Aviation & Drones Department, Mr. Diamantakos Konstantinos, and a delegation of the Consortium of the European-funded project 5D-AeroSafe, which is coordinated by “Airbus” and Eurocontrol is a member of it. The representatives of the consortium, including Mr. George Bogdos (Technical Manager of the project and CTO of the company “Future Intelligence”), Mr. Tasos Govas (President of the company  “Greek Water Airports”), and Mrs. Fay Drakopoulou (Executive Administrative Assistant of the company  “Greek Water Airports”), briefed HCAA on the progress of the project and the innovations that 5D-AeroSafe brings to Greece in the fields of security and management of Drones in complex environments such as waterairports, airports and ports.

The 5D–AeroSafe project, which was selected by the European Union’s Directorate-General for Mobility and Transport (DG MOVE), has as its primary objective the application of innovative technologies to maximize aviation safety, offering drone inspection capabilities for airports, air navigation systems of civil aviation, as well as a unique solution for waterairports.

The project’s innovative solution is applied for the first time on a European scale. Using Drone technologies and Artificial Intelligence techniques, the final product will be an integrated waterairport management system that will maximize the safety of seaplane landing and take-off, reduce the administrative costs of waterairport operation, and provide waterairports operators with a comprehensive situational awareness tool.

The project consortium is coordinated by the French company “Airbus,” while the Greek companies “Future Intelligence” and “Greek Water Airports” and the “Hellenic Mediterranean University” are heavily involved. “ENAC” from France, “ITWL” from Poland, “Vicomtech” from Spain, “Airmap” from Germany, and “Ferrovial” from Spain, the second end user of the project, are also members of the consortium. Eurocontrol participates as a consultant and observer in the consortium.

The consortium will collaborate closely with HCAA, which will define the necessary regulatory procedures to ensure that all conditions are met for the successful execution of the pilots. It is anticipated that the project’s developments will significantly contribute to the safety of waterairport and airport operations, while expanding the field of emerging and innovative services in the field of air navigation (U-Space Services).

Following the meeting, Dr. Christos Tsitouras, Governor of the HCAA, stated: “The HCAA has a favourable opinion of the European project 5D-AeroSafe, as the operation of Drones will be a valuable cutting-edge technology tool that will significantly contribute to the safe operation of waterairports and airports. In this context, HCAA is launching a series of initiatives in collaboration with EASA to establish the necessary legislative and regulatory framework for the safe operation of drones.”

The aforementioned meeting with HCAA was a follow-up to the consortium’s validation of the 5D-AeroSafe project’s technical solution during a three-day meeting held in Corfu on November 17, 18, and 19. The meeting was hosted and organized by “Greek Water Airports” one of the project’s end users.

In the coming period, the consortium will begin solution deployment and test flights in an effort to construct the final demonstrator for the Corfu waterairport, the airport in Rhodes, and other European airports