uAvionix receives FAA order for certified drone GPS receiver

August 5, 2021  - By
The truFYX receiver. (Photo: uAvionix)

The truFYX receiver. (Photo: uAvionix)

uAvionix Corp. has received a Technical Standard Order (TSO) from the U.S. Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) for its truFYX GPS receiver for unmanned aircraft systems (UAS).

Capable of receiving satellite-based augmentation system (SBAS) and wide area augmentation system signals, the receiver specifically targets UAS platform navigation and surveillance solutions.

With an increased regulatory focus on certifiability of UAS for beyond visual line of sight (BVLOS) operations, truFYX provides a critical component to enable safe navigation and airspace integration. A uAvionix’s blog article — “Why Certified GPS with Integrity for UAS Navigation Matters” — describes the importance of GPS receivers for UAS BVLOS operations.

The TSO-C145e Class Beta 1 GPS weighs 20 grams, which includes the receiver, antenna, DO-160G power supply and interface protection circuits. A Class Beta 1 GPS enables the truFYX to be the primary position source for domestic enroute and terminal navigation, as well as the primary position source for ADS-B OUT solutions.

The Source Integrity Level 3, System Design Assurance 2 system ensures reception and processing by Air Traffic Control and Traffic Collision Avoidance System when used as a position source for ADS-B. For these reasons, the Airbus Zephyr program was announced as a truFYX launch customer in January.

A certified position source for UAS navigation reduces position error by implementing a strict Receiver Autonomous Integrity Monitoring (RAIM) / Fault Detection and Exclusion (FDE) engine, and processing advanced SBAS messages designed to improve accuracy and integrity. These systems combine to detect unhealthy GPS satellite transmissions and remove them from the position calculation, providing critical differentiation from a typical commercial GPS receiver.

Design Assurance Level C software and hardware is achieved through the use of RTCA DO-178C and DO-254 engineering processes. As with all uAvionix TSO certified avionics, truFYX is manufactured in Montana under an FAA Manufacturing Inspection District Office approved quality-control process and facility.

truFYX technology has been previously TSO-certified in several form factors, including the highly integrated and complex skyBeacon, tailBeacon and tailBeaconX platforms.

About the Author: Tracy Cozzens

Senior Editor Tracy Cozzens joined GPS World magazine in 2006. She also is editor of GPS World’s newsletters and the sister website Geospatial Solutions. She has worked in government, for non-profits, and in corporate communications, editing a variety of publications for audiences ranging from federal government contractors to teachers.