Project budget3 223 553 €
ERDF amount1 934 132 €
The 2 Seas area has challenges regarding innovation and environment, like to strengthen innovation by more R&D and exploitation opportunities, climate adaptation, preservation biodiversity and natural resources. Agriculture, nature and water are 3 major sectors in the 2 Seas area. Just these sectors faces these challenges and need innovations to tackle. More use and development of RS and data processing will create solutions to face these challenges and will also improve efficiency of these sectors. Obstacles to use RS are: lack of knowledge/awareness of the possibilities of RS, RS-SMEs are not fully aware of the role they can play, a lack of suitable test/demo locations and unclear policy on legislation on the use of drones for RS. Challenges are: aggregation of sector demands, translation to RS-SMEs and knowledge institutes, sites for demonstrating (new) RS-applications, harmonisation of legislation/regulations and a structure (durable cluster) to work together on these issues.
To develop a cross border innovation cluster and create the necessary conditions for innovation in the field of remote sensing and advanced data communication & processing, based on needs of priority sectors nature, agriculture and water & infrastructure. A durable innovation cluster will lead to following benefits: cross border cooperation in these sectors to come to aggregation of demands, acceleration of creation of innovative remote sensing products & services, substantial use of remote sensing and improved business operation in these sectors, clarification of different national legislations and a joint lobby for better regulations to create business opportunities.
The main outputs will be:
- Establishment of a cross border innovation cluster on Remote Sensing (RS) applications with the sectors agriculture, water & infrastructure and nature management (end-users), knowledge Institutes, SMEs and branch organisations in the RS-sector and governmental organisations, including joint actions to create an EU remote sensing market.
- Creation of conditional instruments and services to facilitate this cluster (and others), such as: 2 well served demo/test sites, an Impulse Group Demand aggregation and a Task Force Group Legislation & Regulations.
- RS Innovation Roadmaps (strategies and action plans) for the participating and other sectors and for ongoing adjustments of legislation and regulations.
- Increased public awareness and support for the use of remote sensing/drones.
Cross border approach
Three priority sectors in 2 Seas region faces more or less similar challenges. Innovative RS and data processing systems can provide efficient and cost effective solutions for these sectors. In this project, cross border networks in these sectors will be strengthened and cross sectoral cooperation will be created to aggregate needs. Based on this, SMEs and knowledge institutes together will provide and demonstrate solutions. Because legislation and regulations are not clear and more over differs between MS (and in EU) branch organisation and governments/regulation authorities will be involved to take notice of needs and opportunities of sectors and SMEs and to clarify and take steps towards more harmonised regulations. Altogether, in the innovation cluster, participants will work on innovative solutions and development of conditional facilities, instruments and services. Also, strategies, action plans and business models will be developed for durability of this cluster and facilities.
After all partners had complied with the delivery of the necessary starting documents, the partners organized an opening conference in 2017. All partners collected contact information from a total of more than 6000 organizations in the 4 MS. After writing to these organizations, over 500 parties responded to want to participate in the training innovation cluster in the field of RS. In addition to the initial set-up of the cluster, a better understanding of the wishes and needs of the end users and other parties involved has emerged. The general conclusion From the surveys received, innovation can only arise in the field of RS if harmonization of laws and regulations between the various MS occurs. This legislation should make more possible for SMEs in the daily applications for end users.
In 2018, the partners organized and attended various conferences in the field of RS to mainly involve more end users. a mobile and central testsite was established. during the project it became clear that EASA is new was preparing uniform EU L&R for RS applications. The need combine forces was crucial for ICAReS to ensure that the project objectives were met. The EU regulations would be widely implemented ICAReS teamed up with UVSi. The international branch organization of drone operators. UVSi was the only indusbranch organization with which EASA spoke about the elaboration of the L&R. By concluding an MOU, the TFG was able to think along and talk to the UVSi and EASA about the needs of the SMEs and end users in the ICAReS Cluster. The establishment of DRONEREGIME by UVSi and ICAReS, 3000 organisations are involved in the elaboration and implementation of EASA legislation in all EU MS. DRONEREGIME has various working groups in which the parties work on standard scenarios and risk assessments that are necessary under the new legislation, but also to training requirements, test and demo sites and inspection requirements and certificates.
All this to ensure that regulations are uniformly implemented about the EU MS in 2021. In addition to all the regulatory work, the partners have elaborated various strategy plans. Demonstrations have been given and new innovations have been developed and tested. All work have led to the conclusion of an MOU in 2020 where the partners and participants in the cluster have agreed to continue the work within ICAReS and DRONEREGIM to ensure that the interests of the end users are optimally embedded in the new legislation.