Detect and avoid systems for aviation

The aim of the project is to work on a completely automated aerial collision-avoidance system.

Will planes someday fly without pilots? Three EPFL laboratories are working on a completely automated aerial collision-avoidance system. They have joined forces under the aegis of the Transportation Center, in the context of a partnership with Honeywell, a company that specializes in the development of materials and technologies for various sectors including aviation.

This kind of system will first be used for small airplanes or drones, in non-military applications such as forest fire surveillance or monitoring access to industrial sites and borders. And it could prove invaluable in missions that are hazardous or simply not possible with human pilots, such as taking measurements in a volcanic ash cloud or above a nuclear power plant after an accident.

The Real-Time Coordination and Distributed Interaction Systems Group (REACT) is working on predicting trajectories and in-flight collision avoidance.  The Computer Vision Laboratory (CVLab) has the job of outfitting the aircraft with a veritable visual intelligence system. The Distributed Intelligent Systems and Algorithms Laboratory (DISAL) that led the project will test algorithms on small, lightweight flying robots.

This collaborative research project between EPFL and Honeywell lasts 4 years.

News: A step towards total autopilot

Principal investigator Prof. Alcherio Martinoli
Sponsor Honeywell
Period 2012-2016 (48 months)
Collaboration TRACE