CURPAS as umbrella organization of autonomous mobility
CURPAS e.V. develops into a professional association for autonomous systems. Founded as an association for unmanned aviation, CURPAS has become one of the leading networks, providing a platform for manufacturers, research institutions, users and system houses to start projects together and to strengthen the interests of unmanned aviation together.
While the focus of 'unmanned aviation' was previously more on the word 'aviation', the word 'unmanned' is now to form the core of the association. In a fundamental decision CURPAS is expanding its field of activity to unmanned mobility and logistics solutions of all kinds. No matter if by water, by land, by rail or by air.
The common basis of many forms of technology is the autonomy
"This is a paradigm shift that not only we as an association have accomplished," says Prof. Dr. Uwe Meinberg, Chairman of CURPAS e.V., explaining the new orientation of the network. "This is a paradigm shift that we at CURPAS merely had to understand. In the minds of most people, a classic helicopter and a remote-controlled drone are much more similar than an autonomously flying multicopter and a driverless ship controlled by GPS. But exactly this idea is wrong. The technology, the software, the sensors, the deployment scenarios, the manufacturers and the users of autonomous systems have much more in common than two technical systems that just happen to be both in the air. The synergies lie in autonomy, not in aviation".
Research in autonomous aviation is above all research in autonomy
CURPAS has grown strongly over the last four years and has gained members along the entire value chain of unmanned systems. On the one hand, these members already include many companies that offer solutions and products for the use of autonomous systems on land and at sea. On the other hand, however, it was mainly large-scale research projects with many participants that made it clear that the development work carried out in the network is much more generally transferable to autonomous systems than was initially planned.
Autonomous logistics chains are the reality of tomorrow
"If a service provider wants to establish logistics chains or develop mobility concepts of tomorrow, he won't engage three think tanks that deal with aviation, automotive and shipping and hope that they will somehow work together in a meaningful way. He will want to have external expertise from a single source. CURPAS wants to be ready and willing to develop interdisciplinary mobility concepts in practice when the market demands them". As a concrete example, Prof. Dr. Meinberg says: "There is no doubt that mobility will at some point become autonomous. Goods will be brought to the conurbations by autonomous inland waterway transport, where autonomous vehicles will take over the transport from the port and hand it over to autonomous drones for the last mile and the precise transport. These are solutions that must be developed together under one roof. These are solutions that we must now explore together so that we can offer them as soon as the market demands them.
Reorientation in practice
The reorientation of CURPAS has been under discussion for some time now, with the 2020 financial year the matter has been decided. Dr. Christina Einsenberg, Network Manager of CURPAS, explains the concrete steps: "Actually, CURPAS used to be the abbreviation for 'Civil Use of Remotely Piloted Aircraft Systems', and strictly speaking, a new name is needed. But CURPAS is now well known and established as a name and brand. Therefore, we keep the acronym as name, but slightly adjust logo, tagline and look. More visible to the outside world, however, will be that from this year on we will also be increasingly active at trade fairs and conferences that will leave our classic terrain in the aviation sector. For example, we will be represented with a stand and several presentations at INFRATEC in Essen from Tuesday onwards.
c/o Center for Aerospace
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Prof. Dr. Uwe Meinberg
Chairman of the Board
Dr. Christina Eisenberg