Verizon Moves Forward on ‘Airborne LTE’ Drone Initiative

Last week, Verizon teamed up with American Aerospace Technologies Inc. (AATI) to determine how drones can create a large area of wireless coverage by delivering LTE services from the air.

According to an update from the telecommunications company, this latest test was conducted in Woodbine, N.J., at Woodbine Municipal Airport.

Verizon says the test of the “aerial LTE” simulated an environment in which power is knocked out due an event such as severe weather that would disrupt communication services.

AATI deployed a long-endurance drone under a Certificate of Waiver or Authorization (COA) from the Federal Aviation Administration. The COA was issued in Cape May County, N.J., in preparation for a “major emergency preparedness exercise” last May.

“This new test builds upon our leadership in conducting the first successful demonstration in the U.S. for providing aerial coverage from a long-endurance medium altitude aircraft with AATI in Cape May last October,” says Christopher Desmond of Verizon Network.

In October, Verizon announced its airborne LTE initiative, which was two years in the making. The company made another big move in the commercial drone industry when it acquired drone operations management company Skyward in February.

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