Nokia drone solution get European certification

Remember Nokia?

They used to make some really popular cellular phones out of Finland in the nineties and noughties; their Nokia 1100 still holds the record as the best-selling phone ever, with worldwide sales going over 250million around 2004-05.

And we know we’re being presumptuous for saying this; but we think the Lumia 1520 with its Windows OS is the best phone ever made. Nokia are still making phones apparently, along with a bunch of other telecommunications products, like laptops, televisions, speakers, headphones and related accessories.

And drones too.

Yes. Drones.

Nokia has Drone Networks; an end-to-end drone technology solution powered by public and private 4G/LTE and 5G networks. It comprises Nokia drones, a docking station, a ground control station as well as add-on equipment such as a dual gimbal camera.

The solution enables the use of multiple drones to fly on automated individual missions steered from a single ground control station, running on the edge cloud.

And the reason why we are covering this today is because the company has had this drone solution European Conformity (CE) certified.

This is a big deal for Nokia because they are the first drone maker to offer a CE-certified drone solution for industrial application in fields that include public safety, smart cities, construction, energy and defence.

“Our mission is to reshape the industrial UAV (unmanned aerial vehicle) market, providing enhanced situational awareness to aid search and rescue, surveillance, and other UAV operations in a wide variety of industries,” said Thomas Eder, Head of Embedded Wireless Solutions at Nokia.

“Nokia Drone Networks has been designed to comply with the remote operation requirements of aviation regulatory bodies such as EASA in Europe and FAA in the United States. This will help us address growing market demands as a turnkey provider with a solution designed and produced in Europe.

“The unique feature set enabling the integration of Nokia drones with third-party applications will aid the transformation of the drones, allowing them to be used as a flying data collection platform leveraging reliable 4G and 5G edge cloud connectivity.”

In a statement, the company added that its Drone Networks solution can be operated remotely for search and rescue activities, and to assess damage in a hazardous environment. Nokia drones can also be programmed to manage autonomous scheduled flights for applications like additional security at large events or to manage regular remote equipment inspections.

The docking station protects the drone and payload, such as the sensor devices or dual gimbal camera, from external hazards and harsh weather while it remotely charges the drone to prepare for the next flight.

The Nokia drones can also be customised to work with third party payloads like additional cameras and sensors.

“By connecting over public and private 4G/LTE and 5G networks, customers will benefit from the highest reliability,” Nokia said.

“Using cellular connectivity technologies also offers higher data rates and lower latency enabling more data to be streamed than over Wi-Fi. Beyond visual line of sight (BVLOS) operations with real-time kinetic (RTK) positioning improves situational awareness.

“Dual modem connectivity allows Nokia drones to simultaneously connect to multiple networks, complying with system redundancy that is commonly required by aviation regulatory bodies.

The Drone Networks has already been successfully trialled in conjunction with New York Power Authority, which connected over private LTE and tested them for transmission line inspection.

“When used in conjunction with Nokia MXIE, data from Nokia drones can be collected and processed in real time at the edge cloud. An open API framework allows agencies and enterprises to onboard pre-integrated Nokia and third-party applications and systems and take advantage of a growing number of compelling public safety and Industry 4.0 use cases for drone automation, including object identification, tracking and network measurements

Depending on the deployed configuration, Nokia drones offer more than 50 minutes of flight time and cover distances of more than 30km.


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