ATIS announced release of "3GPP Release 17 – Building Blocks for UAV Applications," a report that describes how mobile networks supporting 3GPP Release 17 specifications can enable uncrewed aerial vehicle (UAV) applications. It also shows how the 3GPP system can be used to enhance the opportunities to safely use UAVs for commercial and leisure applications.

“Evolving technology, standards and regulations are increasing the market for UAV services,” noted ATIS President and CEO Susan Miller. “ATIS has provided a forward-looking view of how mobile networks supporting 3GPP Release 17 specifications can prepare for an increasingly drone-reliant future—and new opportunities inherent in it.”

UAVs are heavily dependent on wireless communications which can address multiple requirements including command and control, location-finding, cooperative perception and collision avoidance, as well as remote identification. To better serve UAV applications such as these, 3GPP Release 17 specifies mobile cellular capabilities that address UAV use cases. 

Because UAV applications interact with several different parts of the 3GPP system, it can be difficult to fully appreciate how 3GPP addresses UAV requirements by direct reference to the specifications. In many cases, the capabilities in 3GPP specifications are intended to be integrated with other standards to build complete solutions. With this new report, ATIS makes a major contribution to help technical decision makers and system architects better understand the role of 3GPP’s UAV specifications and how they fit with other initiatives.