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Lleida-Alguaire airport: more than a flight location

un avió gran està aparcat en un aeroport amb una pista i un camp al fons i un avió a terra, Ei-Q, vista aèria, una foto de desplaçament d'inclinació, superplana

A multifunctional airport

The Lleida-Alguaire airport, located in the province of Lleida, was initially intended to become a secondary airport for El Prat or a freight terminal. However, it has found its reason for being in other activities that make it unique and versatile.

In addition to functioning as a training space, the Lleida-Alguaire airport is being consolidated as an aeronautical testing and rehearsal center. In this sense, the development of the new EGNOS system (European Geostationary Navigation Overlay System) for unmanned aerial vehicles stands out, the tests of which will take place on June 11.

The EGNOS system: greater precision and reliability

EGNOS is a support system for satellite air navigation systems that improves the precision and reliability of GPS. Its operation is based on correcting errors in GPS signals, providing additional information and protecting users from possible interference. This project, developed by the EU Space Agency, has the collaboration of the Chinese company Ehang and tests will be carried out with the EH216-S eVTOL vehicle at the vertiport located at the Lleida-Alguaire airport.

These tests have three main objectives: to enable the capabilities of the EGNOS system on board the autonomous aerial vehicle to provide precise navigation guidance, to deploy EGNOS at Lleida-Alguaire Airport and to demonstrate how it can support air operations. In addition, the aim is to develop, test and validate the design criteria of an EGNOS navigation procedure.

Collaboration and protagonists

The Lleida-Alguaire test center for unmanned aerial vehicles, where these tests are carried out, is the result of the collaboration between Ehang and Aeroports de Catalunya. Inaugurated in October 2023, this center has become a benchmark in airport infrastructure, air traffic management systems, operations and information technologies.

Several prominent entities participate in these tests. On the one hand, PildoLabs, a Catalan engineering company specialized in aeronautical and space services. On the other hand, Ehang, a Chinese company that is a world leader in unmanned drone technology. There is also the participation of ThalesAlenia Space, operator of the EGNOS system and world leader in satellite navigation systems, and the Polytechnic University of Timisoara, specialized in the processing of data from videos for the development of VTOLS.

The Lleida-Alguaire airport has managed to reinvent itself and become a multifunctional space that goes beyond flights. With its participation in aeronautical tests and the development of the EGNOS system, it is positioned as a reference in the field of aviation and airport technology. Alguaire rises as a place of innovation and progress in the field of aeronautics.

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