Air taxi and cargo drones: developments of the Moscow Innovation Cluster participants

April 29
Science and innovation

In April, the whole world remembers Yuri Gagarin and the first flight into space. Having overcome the earth's gravity then, human continues to explore the universe. Technologies are developing and there are more opportunities for this every year. Leading Moscow companies also contribute to the development of the aerospace industry. And they are supported by the Moscow Innovation Cluster. On this platform, new developments are supported by the city, as well as investors, customers and like-minded people.


The capital's companies produce drones that can deliver heavy loads and keep records of goods in warehouses, design ultralight rockets and study the environment from space. We tell you about interesting projects supported by the Moscow Innovation Cluster.

View from space

In 2020, Success Rockets became a participant of the cluster. It collects and analyzes space data. With the help of satellites, it is easier to track many processes. For example, you can predict natural disasters and respond quickly to them, monitor the environmental situation and search for minerals, and develop agrobusiness. In the future, space photos are planned to be processed with the help of artificial intelligence.

The company has developed its own ultralight rockets. Although from the point of view of an ordinary person, they are not so ultralight - the weight of the lightest rocket is 34 tons. They can be used for launching small spacecraft into outer space for meteorological research, testing various systems in space, and other scientific researches. The manufacturer has already made a test launch.


In addition, the company produces satellite platforms for small spacecraft, groups of satellites for data transmission, as well as orbital transfer vehicles that will be able to deliver small spacecraft from the reference orbit to higher ones

"We cooperate with the Moscow Innovation Cluster in several spheres. We received access to supporting measures from the city - from subsidies to assistance in finding offices and industrial premises, as well as informational and structural support. In addition, we are now working on the issue of our placement in the Vorobyovy Gory innovative scientific and technological center of Moscow State University", Oleg Mansurov added.

Transport without pilots

Modern technologies facilitate human labor. A vivid example is unmanned transport. So, the Alet company is developing a drone that is able to transport cargo weighing up to 600 kilograms over long distances, including too hard-to-reach regions. At the same time, the speed of the drone is close to the speed of the helicopter (on average, more than 200 kilometers per hour).

Drones can also help a person in their usual work. So, the YuVL Robotics company has developed a drone for inventory counting in a warehouse. Companies regularly conduct inventory not only for accounting purposes but also to understand how much product remained. This usually takes a lot of time and money, since the warehouse must be closed during the entire process of counting (stock receipt and issue is stopped).

People can make mistakes, then the calculation will be wrong. In addition, many warehouses use racks up to 20 meters height. Only a person with special training can climb there. For companies, this is a new cost and risk.

Entrepreneurs offer to count with the help of drones. The drones fly around the racks, scan the pallet markings and process the information, and then transmit it to the ground station. The drone can also take photos of each pallet. It's convenient, fast, and safe. For comparison, it will take about three days and 30 people to inventory a warehouse where 20 thousand pallets are stored. And with the help of six drones, you can cope with the job in three hours.


The largest companies in Russia and abroad already use drones for inventory. In the future, the developers want to teach drones computer vision, so that they not only evaluate the pallet by marking but also see what is stored on it.

Another company named Hover deals with flying devices - a member of the Moscow Innovation Cluster. Entrepreneurs have created an air taxi that can lift two people into the air (the total weight should not exceed 300 kilograms).

The device only vaguely resembles a car, it more looks like a futuristic light-engine aircraft. A flying taxi can accelerate up to 200 kilometers per hour. The flight is controlled by a computer that monitors the safety itself. Passengers sit in kevlar seats and are protected by a special external frame, and in case of accidents there is a parachute that will safely lower the car along with people to the ground. The company has already conducted a series of tests at the Small Sports Arena in Luzhniki.


Momentum for development

For drone market development, their flights must become regular and safe, including for helicopters and aircraft that will share their airspace. This will become possible only after the information support system creation for unmanned aircraft flights. The implementation of such a project is carried out by the Astra company.

For helicopters and airplanes, there is an air traffic control system. In fact, the system for drones will become its ‘little brother’. The system will allow you to make a flight plan, document, track the location of drones automatically and adjust their route if necessary. Drones will be able to fly legally and safely at an altitude of up to 100 meters, and up to three thousand meters, even where there is no network (LTE, 5G, Wi-Fi). According to the idea of the project authors, this will be provided with ground and on-board modules including using Russian satellite communications.


While the project is in active development, the basic services and the first prototype will appear before the end of the year. The authors hope that the Moscow Innovation Cluster will help to find drones and their services developers. This will help to understand their requirements and needs and take them into account when creating a system.

On the Moscow Innovation Cluster platform, they not only introduce and develop innovations, but also create links between large corporations, industrial enterprises, small and medium-sized businesses, educational and scientific organizations, development institutions and the city. More than 20 thousand organizations have already become members of the cluster. The project is supervised by the Moscow Department of Entrepreneurship and Innovative Development together with the Department of Information Technology.


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