SNC Is Applying Navigation, Sensor Expertise to Emerging Autonomous Vehicle and Aircraft Market

Sparks, Nev., February 01, 2021 – “Commercial autonomous vehicles offer an exciting promise and endless opportunities for the future,” said. “These technologies are a natural extension of SNC’s decades of cutting-edge experience and customer trust in safe and reliable operations of autonomous vehicles in all kinds of environments.” -- Fatih Ozmen, SNC CEO and Owner

Watch how SNC technology can help make Urban Air Mobility a reality

Sierra Nevada Corporation is leveraging deep expertise in obstacle and collision avoidance, flight navigation and landing systems and other innovative advanced technologies in support of autonomous vehicles, including self-driving cars and self-flying aircraft in urban areas. Autonomous delivery aircraft and vehicles offer opportunities to significantly reduce congestion on urban streets by shifting package and cargo delivery to the air and at night. To do so, providers require technological solutions that enable navigation of crowded city streets and other potential obstacles and hazards at any time of day and in any type of weather.

SNC’s technical credentials are well known among the company’s government customers, especially in the areas of obstacle detection and avoidance systems, automated flight, takeoff and landing, navigation and platform communications and coordination controls. When applied commercially, these capabilities will help make civil and commercial autonomous ground transportation and urban air mobility (UAM) a cost-effective and safe reality.

Obstacle and Collision Avoidance Systems

SNC technology could play an important role in overcoming one of the greatest barriers to safe and reliable autonomous ground transportation and flight: the ability of vehicles and aircraft to detect and avoid stationary and moving obstacles in the air and on the ground including wires, buildings, pedestrians and other aircraft  and vehicles— and then continue to their destination.

SNC’s obstacle avoidance system is based on Degraded Visual Environment (DVE) Solutions technology, currently in use by the U.S. military. DVE enhances visibility and situational awareness in the dark, inclement weather and low-visibility conditions, enabling them to detect and avoid stationary and moving obstacles in the path through the travel to and from any destination. The technology could allow autonomous flights in crowded and complicated city canyons at night and in adverse weather conditions.

Assured Navigation

SNC’s assured navigation technology, currently in use by U.S. military, can provide  a navigation solution for vehicles and aircraft operating in environments where the Global Positioning System (GPS) is degraded or not available, such as in urban canyons and within structures.

Speeding Cost-Effective Deployment

Safety critical software systems developed by SNC subsidiary, Kutta Technologies, could streamline development costs for emerging autonomous vehicle, unmanned drone and UAM systems. This innovative software could be tailored to unique vehicle specifications and delivered in a variety of hardware platforms based on customer needs. These safety critical systems could also be used to provide traffic management for vehicles and UAM aircraft, safely integrating these drones and UAM aircraft in the current Air Traffic Management system.

Autonomous Takeoff and Landing Technology

SNC’s Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (UAV) Common Automatic Recovery System (UCARS) could provide precision autonomous takeoff and landings for rotary, fixed-wing, or hybrid drones and UAM aircraft using direction from the Air Traffic Management system and on-board aircraft systems.

Interoperable Communication and Beyond-Line-of-Sight Technologies

SNC’s unmanned communications and control technology leverages and merges the company’s extensive technological experience in enhanced interoperable communication and beyond-line-of-sight technologies.

Safeguarding Against External and Internal Bad Actors

SNC envisions that the company’s cybersecurity technology will play a significant role in the deployment of autonomous vehicle and delivery systems.

SNC’s Binary Armor® family of cybersecurity systems provides critical, real-time endpoint security to stop both internal and external online threats, including malware and intentionally unsafe or erroneous instructions, from reaching autonomous vehicles.

A challenge with today’s airports is the intrusion of unauthorized drones into their airspace. The deployment of UAM into our National Airspace will increase the number of vertiports and aerodromes, increasing the possibility of drone interference. Kutta’s ground based Sense and Avoid system provides a dome of security around the vertiports and aerodromes, detecting unauthorized incursions and providing evasive maneuvers, guiding UAM aircraft to a safe landing.

About Sierra Nevada Corporation (SNC)
Owned by Chairwoman and President Eren Ozmen and CEO Fatih Ozmen, SNC is a trusted leader in solving the world’s toughest challenges through best-of-breed, open architecture engineering in Space Systems, Commercial Solutions, and National Security and Defense. SNC is recognized among The Top 10 Most Innovative Companies in Space, as a Tier One Superior Supplier for the U.S. Air Force and is the only aerospace and defense firm selected as a 2020 US Best Managed Company. For nearly 60 years, SNC has delivered state-of-the-art civil, military and commercial solutions including more than 4,000 space systems, subsystems and components to customers worldwide, and participation in more than 450 missions to space, including to Mars.