U-ELCOME, the European Union's largest drone project, successfully tested in Zaragoza, Spain

- Zaragoza, Spain.

For the first time in Europe, the city of Zaragoza has witnessed the successful integration of three U-space Service Providers (USSPs) in the same operation through the ENAIRE U-Hub platform, as an extended part of the Common Information Services (CISP). The tests carried out in the Aragonese capital within the U-ELCOME project have served to “successfully validate communications with the stakeholders involved”, as highlighted by Isabel Buatas, head of Hera Drone Hub, one of the partners of the U-ELCOME project, led by EUROCONTROL, and formed by 3 clusters in Spain, Italy and France to implement U-space scenarios in a harmonised manner in Europe.


U-ELCOME project seeks communication between CISp and USSPs (U-space Service Providers) with their respective operators and communication between USSPs. Zaragoza demonstration flight has served to successfully validate the security of communications.


“In this flight demo, an emergency use case was presented. During a routine drone flight operation, an emergency may arise and it is the authority itself, the National Police, the City Council, the Fire Department, … which can activate a secure volume within the ENAIRE platform, such as CISp (Common Information Service Provider) to be able to enter this scenario, thus allowing to communicate from the platform itself to the operators the situation so that they can leave that space free”, explained Isabel Buatas.

ENAIRE, the Galician Technological Institute (ITG), Aslogic, Umiles and Primecor have participated in this milestone of air navigation in the U-ELCOME project. 

The tests were attended by authorities representing the Regional Government of Aragon, Zaragoza City Council, Zaragoza Air Base, National Police and the Fire Brigade. There were also representatives of the Aragon Logistics Cluster (ALIA), Mobility City, Bluenest and ELA Aviation, who lent their gyroplane for the event. This support makes Zaragoza the ideal site to implement the U-space scenario as it has a complete ecosystem around this new mobility, including the transfer of space from the city council for 10 years to have a vertiport.

“With initiatives and tests like this one, we want to defend and promote the future service activity that drones will provide, dynamising and bringing the industrial ecosystem closer within a U-space scenario that makes it a safe scenario. Precisely, one of the objectives of the U-ELCOME project is for drones to share airspace with other legitimate users to obtain routine operations in 2026 that will generate new business models”, concluded Isabel Buatas. 



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