Building Out Vantis Phase 3 Together
Vantis Phase 3
December 27, 2023

Building Out Vantis Phase 3 Together

The Northern Plains UAS Test Site, which administers Vantis, has introduced initiatives and set goals for the statewide UAS system to move autonomy forward, since North Dakota’s initial investment in 2019. The Test Site recently brought together a larger team to the University of North Dakota to determine the priorities and direction for the next two years – colloquially referred to as Phase 3.

More than three dozen people from diverse groups and stakeholders came together in November for a strategy session, looking back at successes and building out creative and practical paths to future achievements.

Joining the NPUASTS in Grand Forks were professionals from MITRE and Thales, and other partners.

Bringing together groups with different expertise and touchpoints within the program provided teamwork to hone Vantis’ mission of leading beyond-visual-line-of-sight (BVLOS) operations across the state and National Airspace System.

Together they asked questions and participated in exercises to show how Vantis is important to North Dakota, how it fulfills needs for partners and clients, and the value it brings to UAS industry and community, in general.

The team formulated ideas to meet strategic objectives including: bringing value and improving life through UAS; creating employment opportunity and economic growth; creating an enduring capability that can be expanded; and setting the recognized standard of UAS innovation.

Initiatives Going Forward

Building on the success of the past year, including partner uAvionix receiving a BVLOS exemption from the Federal Aviation Administration, the team focused on new initiatives for Phase 3, including:

  • Generating more use cases and tracking of Vantis’ value to end users
  • Improving services and processes for accelerated FAA approvals
  • Providing new information service to enable operator hazard identification and mitigation
  • Refining transportable system capability to support more on-demand service areas
  • Developing capabilities that support high availability, multiple system users simultaneously
  • Establish new fixed service areas to provide more benefits to the state and address user needs
  • Expand processes to support sites in other states

In each area, they established how to measure the goals and initiatives and started to plan how to make them realities. The cross-organizational teams focused on how to enhance Vantis’ services and expand the value people and communities can realize through the system.

After the session, the team left engaged, and ready to capitalize on the strengths of the growing Vantis system. Collaboration created actionable plans and opportunities. With 2024 on the horizon, the team looks forward to passing milestones and setting the standard in this critical area.