August 26, 2016

Arete M partners six company to develop LTE drones

Arete M partners six companies to develop LTE drones


During the NTU Homecoming 2016 event organised by NTUitive, Arete M signed Expression Of Interests (EOI) with six drone manufacturers to collaborate on development of a platform to control LTE drones.

Arete M is a provider of dedicated 4G network for mission critical applications.

When asked on why Globe UAV chose to partner Arete M, Jorg Brinkmeyer, CEO of Globe UAV, said “Arete has expertise in the network and we are partnering with them to push Singapore as a reference site to the world for potential clients to see the functionality of drones in the connective world.”

Wang Fei, CEO of Aerolion Technologies, also elaborated that Arete M is special because the management has a clear direction. He hopes that both companies can co-develop the platform for drones to fly without being limited by Line Of Sight (LOS).

Arete M is in discussion with the Civil Aviation Authority of Singapore (CAAS) to explore the option of flying drones Beyond Visual Line Of Sight (BVLOS) for automated real time video surveillance.

In Singapore, the operator must maintain LOS with the drones throughout the entire flight. Permits are required if the drones are:

  • Within 5km of aerodromes,
  • At heights greater than 200 ft,
  • Within protected areas, restricted and danger areas,
  • Photography and videography within protected areas
  • More than 7Kg,
  • For commercial/ specialized activities

LTE drones have a huge market. Most of the drones are currently operated using wifi, in order to meet the growing demands for higher bandwidth and wider coverage area, drone operators are looking into LTE as a solution.

Mark Yong, CEO & Co-founder of Garuda Robotics, said “Currently with wifi technology, we are facing problem with real time data transmission. We hope that by using a dedicated LTE network, we can close that gap.”

Alejandro Alonso Puig, Chief Technology Officer (CTO) of Infinium Robotics also added that wifi would have problems with coverage distance and reliability in large warehouses. LTE can solve such problems to produce better results.

Arete M will be installing an outdoor LTE base station at NTU Innovation Centre and an indoor small cell in the Robotics Research Centre (RRC) to allow start-ups, students and developers to use the facilities for testing. Arete M hopes that it can promote the use of LTE with these facilities.

Professor Chen I-Ming, Director of RRC in NTU highlighted that the robots researched in RRC have been deployed for mission critical application such as hospital and tunnel inspection. The installation of dedicated LTE network in the research centre will strengthen the capability of the robots.

Apart from collaborating in drone  platform development, Arete M is also work with H3Dynamics (H3D) to develop an off-grid remote base station.

Taras Wankewycz, group founder and CEO of H3 Dynamics, said that he foresees product development and systems integration. By integrating LTE with their advanced energy solutions known as REMOBOX and DRONEBOX, an off-grid solution can be developed to meet the need of LTE in remote areas for LTE drones.


Photo credits: Chris Kyaw