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As the usage of drones increases, the development of airspace management infrastructure, including systems for sharing flight rules, approved flight areas and flight conditions, is becoming a pressing issue. Providing infrastructure for the safe integration of unmanned air traffic is vital.

Rakuten AirMap has started offering its unmanned traffic management (UTM) platform to drone operators and airspace managers in Japan.

The AirMap platform includes the Airspace Management Dashboard for airspace managers, and the dedicated AirMap app for drone operators, available on iOS and Android.

When using the AirMap Airspace Management Dashboard, airspace managers can set and adjust airspace boundaries and flight rules, view and approve drone flight plans, and communicate directly with drone operators, according to japantoday.com.

With the AirMap app, drone operators can search for designated flight areas, view any rules that apply, and fulfil any relevant flight notification requirements, including the submission of flight plans, right from the app.

The app also offers airspace intelligence for situational awareness and flight planning, such as weather data, including temperature, wind direction and wind speed.

The company anticipates that the UTM system will be deployed by municipalities, universities, and other Japanese airspace managers. Chiba City in Chiba Prefecture will become the first local government in the country to deploy a UTM system of any kind at three drone test fields in the city.

U.S. Air Force photo/Master Sgt. Mikal Canfield