Successful closure of the Horizon 2020 mapKITE project

GeoNumerics is proud to announce the successful completion of the H2020 project “mapKITE: EGNOS-GPS/GALILEO-based high-resolution terrestrial-aerial sensing system” on April, 26th, 2017. On that day, the final review meeting was held at the European GNSS Agency (GSA) headquarters in Prague, Czech Republic, in which the project consortium explained the last results and experiences from the latest test campaign, and the administrative aspects of the project were closed.

  mapKITE team at the GSA during Final Review

The first objective of mapKITE project was to build a mature EGNSS enabled prototype of a novel tandem terrestrial-aerial mapping system based on a terrestrial vehicle (TV) and on an unmanned aircraft (UA), both equipped with remote sensing payloads. The final product is high resolution, oriented, calibrated and integrated images of a corridor and its environment. The second objective was to demonstrate services; i.e., the technical/commercial feasibility of the concept. And finally, the third objective is to develop the market including contracts or negotiations in place so the prototype can be used in operational conditions.

During the mapKITE project, GeoNumerics has coordinated a group of ten teams from six different countries towards the materialization of the final prototype. Many activities have taken place along the project, including its first and second test campaign, several dissemination actions and publications, etc. GeoNumerics presented results about the orientation and calibration concept of mapKITE, first on a simulated environment and finally within the first test campaign.

Indeed, the European GNSS systems are instrumental in mapKITE. An enabling component was the navigation payload based on EGNOS and the E5 AltBOC Galileo signal, superior to existing or planned GPS signals and of particular interest because of its robustness properties and integrity potential.

Unmanned technology is also a key part in mapKITE. Due to the low weight of the UA (below 5 kg), to its low flying altitude (range between 30 m and maximum allowed height) and to its inbuilt line of sight [TV to UA] keeping feature, mapKITE does not suffer from the regulations limiting UAS civilian use. Its design is dominated by safety and abidance to current and foreseeable rules for small UA.

MapKITE goes beyond just traditional mapping with new technology; it is a mapping breakthrough as in introduces a new surveying paradigm, new mathematical models, new ways of fusing sensors and a new “map” product. It is protected by the Spanish patent 201231200 and U.S. patent no. 14/417,435, and with pending patents in Brazil and Europe.

The European Global navigation Satellite system Agency (GSA) is a European Union (EU) agency that promotes the use, adoption, application and market development of European GNSS services and that these services and operations are thoroughly secure, safe and accessible.

Horizon 2020 is the biggest EU Research and Innovation programme ever with nearly €80 billion of funding available over 7 years (2014 to 2020). It couples research and innovation with emphasis on excellent science and industrial leadership, and tackles the EU societal challenges. H2020 goal is to ensure that Europe produces world-class science, removes barriers to innovation and makes it easier for the public and private sectors to work together in delivering innovation.

Galileo is the European Union (EU) satellite-based positioning, navigation and timing system and, as such, the EU contribution to the Global Navigation Satellite System (GNSS) of systems together with the US GPS, the Russian GLONASS and the Chinese Beidou. It will consist of 30 satellites positioned in three circular Medium Earth Orbit (MEO) planes at 23222 km altitude above the Earth. Its Final Operational Capability (FOC) configuration of 30 satellites is scheduled, as of today, for 2020.

GeoNumerics is a research and development (R&D) intensive small-and-medium-enterprise (SME) company specialised in geomatics and accurate navigation.


Acronym: mapKITE
Title: EGNOS-GPS/Galileo-based high-resolution terrestrial-aerial sensing system.
Period: 2015-03-01 to 2017-03-01
Funding: European Global navigation Satellite system Agency (GSA), European Commission (EC) grant 641518, Horizon 2020 (H2020), GALILEO-2-2014
Coordinator: GeoNumerics (ES)
Other participants: TopScan GmbH (DE), GRID-IT GmbH (AT), ALTAIS SL Cartografia (ES), DEIMOS Engenharia (PT), UAVision Engenharia de Sistemas Lda (PT), CATUAV SL (ES), École Polytechnique Fédéral de Lausanne (CH), Engemap Engenharia (BR), Universidade Estadual Paulista – UNESP (BR)

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