Border Region with drone Copyright: © FSD

Cross-border search for a missing person by a 5G networked UAS with integration into the rescue chain and airspace integration using UTM/U-Space services.



+49 241 80 96850



Overview and Objectives

Border regions present special conditions for the implementation of rescue operations, as the fastest available rescue service is not always stationed in the country of emergency due to the course of the border.

Within the framework of the research project GrenzFlug+ in the context of EMRIC (Euregio Maas-Rijn Incidentenbestrijding en Crisisbeheersing) and the MAHL initiative a fleet of unmanned aerial systems (UAS) will be deployed across borders for the reconnaissance of operational areas and the search for missing persons to support the rescue services in this challenging environment.

The composition of the fleet, consisting of manually operated multi-copters, often already in use by the task forces, and modern fully automated tilt-wing or fixed-wing UAS, and the additional distribution of the necessary sensors, such as infrared or RGB cameras, among several UAVs, complicate the conflict-free and efficient deployment of UAS in a spatially limited search area. For this purpose, a newly developed mission control system assigns an optimized flight mission to each UAS based on its current position and its technical characteristics and equipment, which guarantees a fast and safe execution of the mission.

In compliance with data protection regulations, the collected data is then automatically aggregated, evaluated, and presented in a Virtual Reality (VR) application for optimized planning of further actions. In addition, an Augmented Reality (AR) application is provided to the emergency services in the field to assist in the orientation and location of missing persons.

An interface between the unmanned aircraft and UTM (Unmanned Aircraft Systems Traffic Management), an automated airspace management approach, ensures safe integration into the airspace. This will also allow the prioritization of flights involved in rescue missions.

Finally, the project results will be tested in a large-scale EMRIC demo exercise. The application within the large-scale exercise is expected to provide further insights for the further development towards a fully automated cross-border regular operation of UAS in rescue services.

Role of the FSD

In the research project GrenzFlug+, the Institute of Flight System Dynamics focuses on the safe integration of unmanned aerial vehicles into the airspace and the efficient, automated, and cross-border operation of UAS fleets.

To accomplish these tasks, FSD is researching concepts for conflict detection and avoidance between UAS. In cooperation with the German Air Traffic Control (DFS), the extension of these concepts to the interaction between unmanned and manned airspace participants is being researched. These functions will be validated in an urban airspace simulation developed at the institute before being deployed in flight tests.

Aircraft with different characteristics will be used to provide optimal support to the rescue forces. A mission control system will be developed that enables an automated, optimized, and conflict-free deployment of heterogeneous UAS fleets in a defined search area, taking into account the aircraft-specific characteristics.

Furthermore, the FSD is responsible for the support of the UAS and the integration of the necessary sensors and other hardware components.

Project Website

Project Duration

January 2022 – December 2023


The project is funded by the Federal Ministry for Digital and Transport as part of the „Innovative Air Mobility“ program.

  BMDV Logo Copyright: © BMDV

Project Partner

Vodafone GmbH

TEMA Technologie Marketing AG

StädteRegion Aachen

Stadt Aachen

DFS Deutsche Flugsicherung GmbH