Photo: Michael Linden-Vørnle

New centre to disseminate knowledge of drones

Wednesday 08 Oct 14


Michael Linden-Vørnle
Astrophysicist and Chief Adviser
DTU Space
+45 45 25 97 61

Try a drone

On 10 October, in connection with Culture Night, DTU Space Drone Centre will putting on a flying display of a Huginn X1 drone and filming it with both optical and thermal cameras. Visitors can experience the challenge of test-flying a drone. It will also be possible to chat with the first Danish astronaut, Andreas Mogensen. Venue: The Danish Agency for Science, Technology and Innovation in Bredgade.
New DTU centre for unmanned systems—better known as drones—will collaborate with businesses, authorities and public institutions to develop and apply new technologies.

Recent years’ development in unmanned systems has led to a revolution in the dissemination and application of drones, including monitoring natural areas, conducting measurements from the air and mapping climate change.

DTU Space DroneCenter is therefore offering to partner up with Danish and international authorities and businesses in the rapidly growing market in unmanned systems—popularly called drones.

Here, DTU Space can draw on extensive expertise in the areas of autonomy, swarming, high-precision navigation, sensor technology and data fusion, for example—as well as broad specialist knowledge from the rest of DTU.

“With the establishment of the centre, DTU has the opportunity to become a driving force within a high-tech development area with considerable innovation potential not only for Danish society, but globally as well,” says Niels Andersen, Deputy Director, DTU Space.

“The centre can help to secure DTU a central strategic position in unmanned systems projects and partnerships with authorities and private companies in Denmark and abroad.”

Vertical take-off and landing 
DTU Space already has several ongoing research and development projects with industry, civil and military authorities. One of the projects will be supported by Innovationsfonden and is being implemented in collaboration with the Danish drone company SkyWatch.

The aim is to develop a new type of unmanned aircraft with vertical takeoff and and landing capability, and which has both rotors and blades, thus offering higher speeds and greater range.

According to Michael Linden-Vørnle, who heads the new drone centre, the centre will, among other things, look at the possibility of multi-application of unmanned systems:

“The military, for example, can use drones to monitor ships operating in a given area, but the same data can also show how much sea ice is present in the surrounding waters. This type of multi-application would be of great benefit in the Arctic, where there is a pressing need to improve infrastructure through communication and monitoring.”

The new drone centre is anchored at the Office for Innovation and Scientific Advice at DTU Space.

Article in DTUavisen no. 8, October 2014.