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Iris Automation

San Francisco,  CA 
United States
  • Booth: 1369, 401

Iris Automation is a drone technology company building an advanced detect-and-avoid system for drones. As a practical onboard solution, Iris' collision avoidance technology uses computer vision that autonomously detects and avoids aircraft. Iris enables drones to fly Beyond-Visual-Line-of-Sight (BVLOS), making commercial drone operations a reality.

 Press Releases

  • SAN FRANCISCO (April 6, 2020) — Iris Automation today announced the launch of Casia 360 – the first onboard detect-and-avoid (DAA) solution with a 360-degree radial field of view to enable commercial Beyond Visual Line of Sight (BVLOS) operations for Unmanned Aircraft Systems (UAS).

    The Casia system allows an Unmanned Aircraft System to see and react to the aviation environment around the aircraft. Casia 360 detects other aircraft in all directions, uses computer-vision algorithms to classify them, makes intelligent decisions about the threat they may pose to the drone, then triggers an alert to the pilot in command and automated maneuvers to safely avoid collisions.

    Casia is a combination of both hardware and software that is lightweight, low power and small in size. The low SWaP system is composed of two onboard controllers and five long-range optical cameras providing a 360-degree field of view. The software is packaged in a self-contained embedded supercomputer that works with the machine vision cameras onboard.

    “Casia 360 allows a drone to have a complete sense of its surroundings so it can avoid potential collisions from any direction,” said Iris Automation CEO Alexander Harmsen. “We developed this technology based on feedback from our customers and regulatory bodies around the world. It enables drones to be used for an even greater range of long-distance use cases and saves money, increases safety and unlocks applications across multiple industries: railway, energy sector, utility powerline inspections, package delivery, and life-saving search and rescue operations.”

    The Casia technology has been extensively tested, with real-world test flights and mid-air collision scenarios flying various manned aircraft against UAS, over 12,000 real-world encounters and more than 50,000 encounters in simulation. Casia is currently being flown by dozens of customers, across 12 countries and holds BVLOS approvals from regulators in the U.S., South Africa, and Canada.

    Iris Automation is working directly with regulators around the world to make commercial drones safer and more accessible, ensuring Casia 360 achieves the highest levels of safety for national airspace use. Iris Automation also offers customers regulatory support for Part 107 waiver writing and regulatory approval processes to secure the necessary permissions for their unique UAS operations.

    Casia 360 is available for commercial sales preorder now. The initial limited launch of the 360 system has sold out and this system is currently on back-order. For more information, and to secure your purchase, visit www.irisonboard.com/casia.

    About Iris Automation

    Iris Automation is building a computer-vision-based collision avoidance system that helps drones see the world how pilots do. The company is based in San Francisco and is led by a team with experience at NASA, Boeing, and Nvidia, including PhDs in computer vision. Iris is a key partner on multiple FAA UAS Integration Pilot Programs, a participant of NASA’s Unmanned Traffic Management program and a participant of Transport Canada’s BVLOS Technology Demonstration Program. Visit www.irisonboard.com

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  • SAN FRANCISCO March 26, 2020  – MVT Geo-solutions, in partnership with Iris Automation, has been granted the first Beyond-Visual-Line-of-Sight (BVLOS) Special Flight Operations Certificate (SFOC) by Transport Canada using only onboard Detect-and-Avoid (DAA). The approval was granted based on the utilization of Iris Automation’s DAA system, called Casia, which provides commercial drones with automated collision avoidance maneuvers. 

    The waiver permits flights within the Unmanned Aircraft Systems (UAS) Center of Excellence’s controlled airspace Remotely Piloted Aircraft System (RPAS) test range in Alma, Quebec. This is the first BVLOS flight at the location leveraging only onboard DAA for air risk mitigation, and does not require ground-based observers or radar. BVLOS flights unlock autonomous drone use for economically beneficial commercial applications including infrastructure inspection, mining, mapping, agriculture, emergency response, and package delivery. 

    “Achieving the first BVLOS approval in Canada further validates our technology alongside multiple permissions we have already received from regulators in the U.S. and South Africa,” said Iris Automation CEO Alexander Harmsen. ”This technology is critical to safely integrate drones into the airspace along with manned-aircraft, and we look forward to unlocking commercial operations for our customers in Canada.” 

    Iris Automation’s onboard computer-vision DAA system is the most effective, scalable, and cost-effective technology to enable commercial BVLOS operations. 

    “The UAS Center of Excellence is looking forward to leveraging Iris Automation’s industry-leading DAA system and existing flight expertise within our network to conduct BVLOS flights with MVT Geo-solutions,” said UAS Center of Excellence Director William de Keiser. “We will continue to develop our partnership with Iris Automation to provide training to local operators and enable BVLOS flights in Canada.”

    The first BVLOS flights are scheduled to take place within weeks. The resulting data will inform more complex BVLOS operations in the future.

    About Iris Automation:

    Iris Automation is building a computer-vision-based avoidance system that helps drones see the world how pilots do. The company is based in San Francisco and is led by a team with experience at NASA, Boeing, and Nvidia, including PhDs in computer vision. Iris is a key partner on multiple FAA UAS Integration Pilot Programs, a participant of NASA’s Unmanned Traffic Management program and a participant of Transport Canada’s BVLOS Technology Demonstration Program. Learn more at www.irisonboard.com

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  • Casia 360 - Detect and Avoid system
    Casia 360 is the first commercially available 360 degree radial computer vision Detect-and-Avoid system for Unmanned Aircraft Systems (UAS). As an integrated onboard hardware and software solution, Casia systems are small, light and low power....

  • Casia 360 is a detect-and-avoid system offering a 360 degree radial fied of view for Beyond Visual Line of Sight (BVLOS) drone flights. Casia 360 is a low size, weight and power (SWaP) system composed of multiple on-board controllers (2) and 360 degree array of cameras for detect and avoid capabilities in medium air-risk environments. The engineered performance characteristics of the system are intended to meet the current draft ASTM standard risk ratios for autonomous detect and avoid.

    Key features:

    • Patented computer vision technology
    • Open integration with any drone platform, and most major autopilot software systems
    • Field of vision: 360 degrees horizontal (40 degrees overlap) x 50 degrees vertical based on 5 cameras installed
    • ADS-B integration available with ~100% detection of cooperative aircraft 
    • System weight: 1904 grams open (no cases), 2152 grams enclosed 
    • Engineered risk ratio performance: 70+% NMAC avoidance rate, 50+% well clear avoidance rate
    • Range: 950+ meters

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