On April 18, 2023, Telespazio, a joint venture between Leonardo and Thales, hosted the final event of the S-EDGE (Satellite, Drones, and 5G for Law Enforcement Applications) project at the Fucino Space Centre. The project, co-funded by the European Space Agency, aimed to develop support services for law enforcement agencies through the use of drones, 5G connectivity, satellite technologies, and artificial intelligence.
The project, led by Telespazio in collaboration with the Politecnico di Torino, ADPM Drones, e-GEOS, TIM, and SEIKEY, involved the design, development, verification, and validation of an integrated platform for end-to-end drone mission management. The goal was to acquire and provide real-time video images of areas of interest for law enforcement agencies.
The platform can be used for both regular patrols in automatic mode and on-demand missions, planning drone missions, identifying lower-risk flight paths, managing flight execution, and displaying the drone’s position and acquired video in real-time, even in BVLOS (Beyond Visual Line of Sight) mode.
End-to-end service management and satellite assets are key factors in this solution. In fact, the route is planned using high-resolution digital surface models (DSMs); drones or their hangars are equipped with communication boxes that use satellite communication as a backup in case of 5G/LTE connection loss; navigation services provide precise positioning.
The final event of the S-EDGE project concluded with a flight demonstration among the antennas of the Space Centre located in the Abruzzo region. “This project demonstrates how the integration of advanced technologies with drones, 5G connectivity, and satellite technologies can provide added value for law enforcement agencies and civil protection, helping them ensure the safety of citizens,” stated Paolo Minciacchi, manager of Telespazio’s Geo Information Business Line.