Japan Airlines, KDDI to create social infrastructure for drones

Telecom giant KDDI is joining hands with Japan Airlines to expand its drone services, as demand for the remote-controlled aircraft grows. drones japan

KDDI has been putting more resources into drone-operation systems, leveraging its communications technology. The tie-up will allow KDDI to tap JAL’s expertise in managing flight operations.

The two companies are anticipating large numbers of drones flying in the skies over Japan in the near future.
From the next fiscal year starting in April, drone operators in Japan will be allowed to fly the aircraft beyond their line of sight, even when there are people below.

That will free them up for a variety of uses, including logistics.
The companies plan to conduct test flights for transporting goods to remote islands. They will jointly develop services for businesses and local governments that hope to use drones.

KDDI is targeting revenue of 10 billion yen, or more than 80 million dollars, from the drone business in the year through March 2025. drones japan


Outline of this Alliance

  • Establishment of systems for integrated flight management of multiple drones flying  throughout Japan

By combining UTM system developed by KDDI for multiple drone operators with JAL’s air transport business technology and expertise in flight management, including safety management related to air travel, we will build systems for performing flight management, such as collision avoidance, in the airspace where multiple drones are flying around the country. We will also contribute to the institutionalization and creation of guidelines necessary for the promotion of the drone industry.

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  • Examining business models for supporting the use of drones by companies and municipalities

We will examine business models that provide consulting and resources to companies and municipalities that want to utilize drones. In addition to transporting goods by drones in remote island areas in fiscal 2022, we will conduct demonstrations to meet a variety of needs, and build a drone utilization business based on the demonstrations.

The two companies have accumulated knowledge and experience through simultaneous demonstration tests of multiple drones, delivery of pharmaceuticals in Hyogo Prefecture, and the first demonstration test of drones crossing multiple major bridges in Tokyo, with the aim of making drones automatic and autonomous and operating at high density and high frequency.
In the future, the two companies will continue to support drone services by companies and local governments with a focus on flight management, aiming to create a prosperous and sustainable society by closing the distance between people, goods and ideas in cities and rural areas through the use of drones as social infrastructure.

SUSTAINABLE DEVELOPMENT GOALS

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