The aerospace giant Honeywell is partnering with Swiss startup Daedalean to develop vision-based flight control solutions for general aviation and eVTOL aircraft.
Under an agreement announced Nov. 15, Honeywell will support Daedalean’s efforts to develop a fully autonomous autopilot based on artificial intelligence (AI). Honeywell Ventures has also joined Daedalean’s pool of investors, the amount and conditions undisclosed.
As previously reported by eVTOL.com, the startup is using convolutional neural networks to process visual images in a way that mimics human situational awareness, enabling solutions for autonomous takeoff, landing, and GPS-independent navigation and collision avoidance. Even before fully autonomous aircraft reach the market, the company believes its technology has the potential to enhance more conventional autopilots and collision-avoidance systems.
According to Daedalean founder and CEO Luuk van Dijk, “Developing flight control software requires lots of flight data. That’s why the collaboration with prominent industry partners such as Honeywell is critical for us to speed up the development of our technology. We are preparing for the joint flights testing our solutions for various types of aircraft, and excited to carry out trials on the planes we haven’t tried before.”
Although the terms of Honeywell’s investment were not disclosed, in July 2019, Daedalean announced it had raised nearly $12 million in funding from investors including Carthona Capital, Redalpine, and Amino Capital.