Astral Aerial Solutions wins 2017 IATA Air Cargo Innovation award
The International Air Transport Association (IATA) has announced that Kenya based Astral Aerial Solutions is the recipient of the IATA Air Cargo Innovation Award for 2017, for the company's Unmanned Aircraft System (UAS) Traffic Management (UTM) Concept for Africa. The award was presented at the 11th World Cargo Symposium (WCS) in Abu Dhabi.
Astral Aerial’s project seeks to lay the foundation for safe, secure and effective UAS operations and integration into existing airspace to ultimately allow the expansion of air cargo in Africa.
“The IATA Air Cargo Innovation Awards showcase the innovation going on across the air cargo industry. Among many worthy candidates I congratulate Astral Aerial Solutions for an outstanding achievement and hope the $20,000 first prize will help in its development. It is great to see a developing nation company helping to drive the innovation that is needed throughout the global air cargo industry,” said Glyn Hughes, IATA’s Global Head of Cargo.
“We are delighted to be recognized for our innovative UTM Concept for Africa project. Drone technology has strong potential to boost the continent’s air connectivity and deliver goods and services to remote regions and more critical lifesaving products to those in need,” said Sanjeev Gadhia, CEO Astral Aviation.
“We hope to be able to develop a pathway that will encourage regulators, operators and manufacturers to come together and pave the way forward for safe and efficient UAS use in the continent,” said Geoffrey Kinyua the project’s manager.