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Simulyze Supports First US Ship-to-Shore Drone Delivery

Single Post Template - Magazine PRO Homeland Security TodayJust weeks after the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) issued the long-awaited first operational rules for the routine commercial use of small unmanned aircraft systems (UAS), the first US ship-to-shore drone delivery was held to explore the humanitarian use of drones in disasters.

Several agencies from the United Nations, the American Red Cross, drone tech companies, and leading academics assembled on June 22 at the Cape May-Lewes Ferry Terminal in North Cape May, NJ for the Drones in Disasters ‘Do Tank’ event, led by Field Innovation Team, a disaster preparedness nonprofit group.

Nevada-based drone delivery company Flirtey teamed up with Dr. Timothy Amukele, a Johns Hopkins Hospital pathologist and leading research expert in unmanned air transport of human diagnostic samples, to demonstrate the potential use of UAS to deliver medical supplies during a natural disaster or humanitarian crisis.

“Imagine a future where in the event of a natural disaster like Hurricane Sandy, Flirtey drones rapidly deliver emergency medical supplies, food and water to people who need help. This demonstration is helping to make that future a reality, and taking us one step closer to Flirtey’s mission to save lives and change lifestyles,” said Matt Sweeny, CEO of Flirtey.

During the event, Simulyze, a leading provider of operational intelligence (OI) solutions, successfully deployed the company’s Mission Insight OI application, which provides UAS operators with situational awareness in real-time in a variety of operational environments.

Simulyze’s President and CEO Kevin Gallagher explained in a blog post that Mission Insight processes and analyzes large streams of data, both structured and unstructured, from a wide variety of data sources in real-time. This provides UAS operators with a common operating picture in a single, customized graphical interface.

Simulyze’s OI platform has been deployed across numerous organizations worldwide, including the Department of Defense, the US Intelligence community, Department of Homeland Security, and commercial UAS applications.

At the ‘Do Tank’ event, Simulyze’s Mission Insight delivered information to UAS operators by coordinating with the FAA’s William J. Hughes Technical Center. Gallagher explained in a July 2016 blog post that the FAA’s Tech Center provided real-time, regional aircraft position data and Mission Insight provided aircraft telemetry and other local data back to FAA’s Tech Center platform based in Atlantic City.

"The ship-to-shore delivery is a template for how to integrate data from drones into existing data flow and make it possible for drones to operate safely in US airspace,” said Gallagher. “The demonstration, which included processing and visualizing data about ships, manned aircraft and UAVs, further emphasized the critical need for having a broader, real-time picture than just knowing the location of your UAV.”

With the FAA’s release of the new regulations for small UAS use, the technology featured at the ‘Do Tank’ event could soon become a reality, which could change the future of disaster response and global humanitarian efforts.

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The Government Technology & Services Coalition's Homeland Security Today (HSToday) is the premier news and information resource for the homeland security community, dedicated to elevating the discussions and insights that can support a safe and secure nation. A non-profit magazine and media platform, HSToday provides readers with the whole story, placing facts and comments in context to inform debate and drive realistic solutions to some of the nation’s most vexing security challenges.

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