IMSAR Announces Sale of Detect and Avoid Radar Technology to Fortem Technologies
Product Available from Fortem in July 2016
SPRINGVILLE, Utah – May 2, 2016 – IMSAR LLC, leaders in miniaturized Synthetic Aperture Radar (SAR), today announced the sale of their detect and avoid radar technology to Fortem Technologies. This technology powered IMSAR’s previously announced family of collision avoidance radar designed for the commercial Unmanned Aerial Systems (UAS) market.
The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) requires an aircraft operating in civil airspace to be able to “see and avoid” other aircraft. Collision-avoidance systems seek to meet this requirement by allowing UASs to detect other airborne objects, predict potential midair collisions, and automatically maneuver the UAS to avoid catastrophes. This capability is often referred to as “sense and avoid” or “detect and avoid.” A radar-based “sense and avoid” solution for small UASs was previously not viable due to the high cost, high weight, and complex technology and algorithms required for such a system. Fortem’s solution addresses those concerns. This product will enable small UASs to avoid midair collisions with manned or unmanned aircraft, and even targets that lack a transponder, like cranes. This will pave the way for the integration of UAS into civil airspace around the world.
“We are excited to have reached key development milestones and successfully spin out this solution to Fortem,” said Ryan Smith, CEO of IMSAR. “IMSAR remains laser focused on our Department of Defense customers and their unique applications for our high performance radar. We believe Fortem Technologies is best positioned to bring this proven detect and avoid technology to the market for the rest of the UAS community.”
Adam Robertson, Vice President at IMSAR will be leaving to join Fortem Technologies. “Over the last 9 years at IMSAR, we have built the world’s smallest, high-performance radar. This new radar for detect and avoid pays homage to that legacy while delivering it at a cost-effective price point that is consistent with commercial UAS applications.” According to Mr. Robertson, Fortem offers the smallest UAS-mounted solution in the world that is commercially available today, making operations possible beyond visual line of sight (BVLOS).
According to Dr. Britton Quist, IMSAR’s CTO, “Radar is ideally suited to fill the gaps needed to solve thesense and avoid problem because it can operate effectively at night and in low-visibility conditions, such as clouds, fog, smoke, and precipitation. This is a capability unmatched by optical, acoustic, infrared, or LiDAR sensors.”
The barrier for radar solutions for ‘Detect and Avoid’ applications has been the size, weight, cost and power consumption. “What IMSAR has created, and Fortem is bringing to market, is no less than revolutionary” said Timothy Bean, CEO of Fortem Technologies. “Nothing like this exists in the UAS market today. We are pleased to have acquired this technology from IMSAR that matches our mission to enable autonomy, specifically for vehicles in the air.”
Fortem Technologies has announced product availability in July 2016.
IMSAR LLC is a privately owned research, development, and manufacturing company located in Springville, UT, that specializes in lightweight, low-power synthetic aperture radar devices and radar image processing. The NanoSAR family first flew on the ScanEagle in 2008. Since then, IMSAR has continued to enhance the capability of its flagship radar system. For more information, visit www.imsar.com.
About Fortem Technologies
Fortem Technologies is a privately held company that delivers solutions to enable the autonomous revolution. Fortem Technologies’ proven solutions allow organizations to transition their UAS operations beyond human line of sight. This enables true autonomous applications by insuring a clear airspace for UAS operations such as routine infrastructure monitoring. For more information visit www.fortemtech.com.
Dr. Michael Duersch
Vice President, Operations
Chief Technology Officer