‘High-Quality Autonomous UAVs For Industrial and Military Applications Are Available Off-The-Shelf’

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Wing Commander (retd) S. Vijay, Vice President, Artificial Intelligence & Robotics Pvt. Ltd. talks about security challenges he foresees for large organizations in the near future, the role played by technologies such as UAVs in enhancing security of an organization, his views on the recent changes in policy related to UAVs as announced by DGCA and the latest products and innovations in the UAV domain that his organization has planned.

Interviewed by Adeesh Sharma

Wing Commander (retd) S. Vijay, Vice President, Artificial Intelligence & Robotics Pvt. Ltd.

What kind of security challenges do you foresee for large organizations in the near future?

Information Security and Physical security are the two most critical security challenges for large or for that matter any size organisation soon. Big data security gaining more attention with each passing year. Information Security is the number one priority, and concern, of IT departments around the world. Most of the Government Departments and Military Establishments use Intranet with robust IT security measures to avoid breach of information security. However, they are vulnerable from physical security threats like perimeter intrusion. India witnessed two major attacks on Pathankot Air Force Base and Uri Military camp in the recent past. Such physical security challenges will be on raise if technology intervention is not adopted by our forces or any large organisations like Oil & Gas facility or Nuclear Power Plants etc.  

What role can technologies such as UAVs play in enhancing security of an organization?

UAVs can greatly enhance the security of any organisation. UAVs are cheaper option when compared to having number of watch towers and each manned by three guards for round the clock vigilance. There are two types/variants of UAVs in the market for security monitoring; one is radio controlled, which covers a large area in a preprogramed flight path or as per active control from a ground station and the second type is a tethered UAV/drone which can stay in air for almost 24 hrs using power from a ground source. A combination of stationary tethered UAV and few radio-controlled UAVs with onboard video analytics can significantly improve security of any organisation by drastically reducing cost in a long run. High-quality autonomous UAVs (unmanned in real sense) for security, industrial and military applications are available off-the-shelf in the market which needs to be integrated into existing security apparatus for enhancing the overall physical security of any organisation.

What are your views on the changes in policy related to UAVs as announced by DGCA?

DGCA announced UAV (RPAS – Remotely Piloted Aircraft System) policy has come in to force with effect from 01 Dec 2018. The policy is comprehensive and futuristic. The policy envisages first-of-its-kind Unmanned Traffic Management (UTM) and NPNT (No Permission No Take-off) which are not even implemented in most advanced countries. India is the first country to introduce such guidelines. On the flipside, the policy was introduced in haste with no prior preparation. Digital Sky Platform, which was to be introduced for managing UTM, online registration of pilots, devices, service providers and instant online clearances to operators for every flight is still under development. In the absence of right infrastructure, current RPAS policy instead of opening Indian skies for commercial use of UAVs is has become a hindrance for operators and manufacturers. 

Please tell us about the latest products and innovations in the UAV domain that your organization has planned?

Artificial Intelligence & Robotics Pvt Ltd is a Start-up company based out of Pune. We are developing Artificial Intelligence (AI) based construction monitoring tool for Infra Sector. The UAV stereo imagery will be analysed using AI tool to derive valuable information on construction activity for Infra companies. We are also working on development of precision landing, collision avoidance systems and NPNT compliance for our inhouse developed Drones.

Please share your views on SAFE South India and IFSEC India expos and how it can be leveraged by security professionals to enhance awareness about various products and technologies.

SAFE South India and IFSEC India Expos are creating a right environment for security professionals to enhance their knowledge and awareness on latest technology trends available in the field of security in global market. I wish them all the very best for upcoming events and keep up the good work.