Thales retained as partner in Vantis BVLOS drone network

After years of preparatory work together, French aviation, defense, and communication giant Thales has been selected as a long-term systems integration partner for North Dakota’s beyond visual line of sight (BVLOS) drone network, Vantis.

Founded in 2019 with an initial investment of $28 million – and receiving an additional $20 million boost earlier this year – much of the infrastructure and strategic preparation in the Vantis BVLOS network is largely complete in the western half of North Dakota. Managed by the Northern Plains UAS Test Site (NPUASTS), Vantis is designed to function as a radar, detection sensor, and radio system, feeding pilots information they need to operate safe and efficient BVLOS missions. 

Once the system passes Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) approval, North Dakota officials say Vantis will make BVLOS flight a reality for any government administration, public organization, or business meeting state safety…