Going ‘BVLOS’ at EEEGR’s SNS2024

Jun 4, 2024 | BVLOS, Condition Survey, Construction Project, Discussion, Exhibition, Regulation

On the 22nd and 23rd May, HexCam returned as exhibitors to the East of England Energy Group’s (EEEGR) annual ‘SNS2024’ conference. It’s been a while since we exhibited but the timing was right this year to use our stand as a platform to share exciting news about our ‘Beyond Visual Line Of Sight’ (BVLOS) innovation work. We’d originally hoped to have the StirlingX ‘SPARROW HAWK’ Vertical Take-Off and Landing (VTOL) suspended above the stand to help illustrate the step-change in technology needed and the pace of innovation but decided to remove the risk of the drone being damaged and used videos and a huge image on the backdrop of our stand instead. Maybe next year?

Rowley and Richard talking to visitors at HexCam's SNS2024 stand

Rowley Cory-Wright and Richard Preen talking to student visitors at HexCam’s SNS2024 stand.

Wednesday was a really busy day with lots of visitors to the stand, all keen to learn more about the Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) supported ‘BVLOS sandbox’ project. We were able to explain the journey we’ve undertaken from working under ‘basic’ CAA permissions (requiring lots of packing up and relocating equipment) to now employing enhanced permissions to fly our drones out to 2.5km from a pilot. With a quieter (and less wet and windy) day on Thursday, we captured some great external shots of the venue for EEEGR to use.

BVLOS is the next big step and short range test flights of the StirlingX ‘SPARROW HAWK’ VTOL drone have already started. Over the coming months, as our Operating Safety Case (OSC) is updated and as a Temporary Reserved Area (TRA) comes into effect, we’ll be starting to extend test flights out towards and along the 60km onshore construction corridor for RWE’s Norfolk Offshore Wind Zone (NOWZ) projects between Happisburgh and Necton.

 

Section of HexCam's stand showing the large image of the Sparrow Hawk VTOL drone

HexCam’s stand put the StirlingX SPARROW HAWK VTOL drone firmly ‘centre stage’