Airbus recently launched a new commercial drone startup, Airbus Aerial, at the 2017 AUVSI Xponential tradeshow and conference in Dallas.
With bases both in the U.S. and in Europe, Airbus Aerial’s initial business will focus on developing new imagery services. The services will leverage software and aerospace technology from across the globe to offer actionable data and analysis of information provided by drones, satellites, high altitude aircraft and other sources.
“Through Airbus Aerial, we are uniquely positioned and fully committed to advancing the commercial unmanned aerial systems (UAS) industry. It is bringing together partners from across the industry, ranging from vehicle manufacturers, data analytics companies, service providers and others, to enable data-focused services at large scale,” says Dirk Hoke, CEO of Airbus Defence and Space. “Using an integrated combination of assets, from UAS platforms to satellite imagery, Airbus Aerial is rolling out a wide range of new imagery services.”
The U.S.-based part of Airbus Aerial will be headquartered in Atlanta and is led by Jesse Kallman, a UAS industry expert with more than 12 years of experience including research at Georgia Tech, federal policy at the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), commercial UAS at Airware and advocacy with groups like AUVSI. Kallman has served as an adviser to executives at Fortune 500 companies, members of Congress, senior officials at the FAA and White House, and Silicon Valley Venture Capital groups.
“Drones are only a piece of a much larger picture for us,” Kallman says. “Airbus Aerial brings together a variety of aerospace technologies — including drones and satellites —combines them in a common software infrastructure, and applies industry-specific analytics to deliver tailored solutions to our customers’ biggest challenges.”
Airbus Aerial imagery services targets a range of applications for commercial industries, such as insurance, agriculture, oil and gas, and utilities, as well as state and local governments.
Recruitment for positions in software development, data analytics and drone operations, among other roles, has begun. Airbus Aerial is also looking for new partnerships to help bring these new services to market.
Airbus is a global leader in aeronautics, space and related services. In 2016, it employed a workforce of around 134,000. Airbus offers a range of passenger airliners from 100 to more than 600 seats. Airbus is also a European leader providing tanker, combat, transport and mission aircraft, as well as Europe’s number one space enterprise and the world’s second largest space business. In helicopters, Airbus provides the most efficient civil and military rotorcraft solutions worldwide.