Scottish Drone Port to Service Offshore Wind

The UK government has agreed to invest in the development of a Drone Port at Montrose in Scotland, setting aside £5.6 million out of the £26.5 million Angus Fund to promote North Angus and Montrose as a clean growth zone where new technologies can be used to improve energy efficiency. This includes support for developing the Mercury Drone Port which is expected to benefit the emerging offshore wind developments and create a regulated testing area to attract companies from across the UK.

Mecury Drone Port would be Scotland’s first drone port and the UK’s first drone port that focuses primarily on the application and testing of Unmanned Aircraft Systems (UAS) technology for offshore marine, agriculture, and rural applications.

How Are Drones Going To Be Used?

Initially, drones are likely to be used for low risk, offshore purposes, including offshore inspection and deliveries to vessels at anchor (one to five kilometres off shore), offshore wind farms (30 to 80 kilometres offshore), and oil and gas platforms (100 to 200 kilometres offshore).

The port will provide developers and drone operators with dedicated ‘drone friendly’ airspace, with plans to provide ground-based support facilities. These will be designed to primarily to facilitate the development of operation drones Beyond Visual Line of Sight (BVLOS) and autonomously in unsegregated airspace.

Airspace will be trialled from zero to twelve kilometres from shore, with segregated drone corridors to wind farms and oil and gas platforms – planning and application is currently underway for this. Furthermore, technologies which could increase sustainable crop production, improve food security, and reduce agriculture’s carbon footprint while achieving net zero or ‘carbon-negative’ production systems will also be supported with this funding.

The project is being developed by the Angus Council and Drone Technologies Ltd (DTL), with assistance from the Civil Aviation Authority (CAA).

UK Government Minister, Iain Stewart comments:

“These are an exciting set of proposals for Angus with the ability to transform the region into a powerhouse for clean growth and green jobs.”

Coverdrone Supporting BVLOS Flights

Coverdrone’s commercial drone insurance policy can accommodate BVLOS flights. Our team are always happy to discuss extended coverage with any organisation that may require to undertake BVLOS flights. Simply give us a call or drop us an email to discuss your options!

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