Thales announced that for the first time, Watchkeeper unmanned aircraft system was flown alongside manned aircraft in controlled civil airspace.

The flight took place on Wednesday 30 September and saw British Army Watchkeeper unmanned aircraft fly from West Wales Airport, United Kingdom into civil controlled airspace for an hour, where it was managed by NATS, the British air navigation services provider, for the first time.

The flight forms part of Project CLAIRE, a collaboration between Thales, NATS, the Dutch National Aerospace Laboratory (NLR), the United Kingdom Ministry of Defence and the United Kingdom Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) and was joint funded by the SESAR (Single European Sky Air Traffic Management Research) Joint Undertaking.

Screen capture of Watchkeeper (b) NATS(NATS).

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