First part of 50-mile UTM corridor in New York launches

 

The first part of the 50-mile Unmanned Traffic Management Corridor in New York has launched.

The corridor now consists of a five-mile circle around Griffiss International Airport. That part of the corridor is equipped with special sensors and radars that can detect small UAS flying at very low altitudes, which is a feature that is not included in traditional radars around airports.

Using $30 million in state funding, the corridor will be expanded next year into a “50-mile-long air space” stretching from Rome to Syracuse, according to Northeast UAS Airspace Integration Research Alliance (NUAIR) President and CEO Larry Brinker.

​In addition to the first part of the corridor launching, New York Governor Andrew M. Cuomo also announced a partnership between NASA and NUAIR to grow the UAS industry in Central New York and the Mohawk Valley.

“With this groundbreaking partnership and our $30 million investment for the most advanced drone testing in the country, we are establishing Central New York and the Mohawk Valley as the premiere destination for businesses at the forefront of innovation,” Cuomo says.

“By investing in this cutting-edge technology, we are creating a pathway to grow the upstate economy and create good-paying, quality jobs in the industries of the future.”

According to Syracuse.com, construction of the full network of sensors and radars is expected to begin by the third quarter of next year, but companies do not have to wait for the entire corridor to be operational before moving to the area, as the five-mile corridor around Griffiss allows for plenty of testing and development already, according to Craig Marcinkowski, director of strategy and business development at Gryphon Sensors.

“We already have a world-class system here,” Marcinkowski says. “We're open for business today.”

The Rome to Syracuse air corridor will give UAS and components manufacturers the ability to safely test their technologies. Developers of unmanned air traffic control systems will also be able to test their hardware and systems in the same airways that manned aircraft fly.

NUAIR officially activated the corridor by flying a manned aircraft and a UAS in airspace over and around Griffiss. 

Gryphon Sensors detected and tracked both aircraft, which allowed air traffic managers to keep the aircraft at a safe distance from each other.

​Gryphon also showcased its mobile Unmanned Traffic Management (UTM) system known as Mobile Skylight.

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