IRIS UAS icon IRIS UAS™ Situational Awareness for BVLOS


IRIS UAS is an airspace situational awareness system developed to provide Unmanned Aerial Systems (UAS) operators with the necessary situational awareness to safely operate Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAVs) Beyond Visual Line-of-Sight (BVLOS). The platform presents users with 2D and 3D map and terrain data, aeronautical information such as aerodrome locations, obstacles and airspace, and real-time data from sensors, cameras, and weather data sources - all integrated within a single, common operating picture display that’s easy to use, and customizable on a per-mission basis.

A Common Operating Picture for BVLOS Operations

As the Commercial UAS sector matures, the need to conduct BVLOS operations in non-segregated airspace is becoming increasingly acute. The IRIS UAS system greatly enhances the situational awareness of UAS operators in BVLOS operations by presenting a single situational awareness display that aggregates and presents a broad array of external and ownship information sources. These are information sources that are not normally available or presented to a UAS operator by typical Ground Control Station (GCS) displays.

By consolidating this information and making it easily accessible to the UAS operator, IRIS UAS helps assist the operator in recognizing flight risks and choosing the safest course of action while the UAS is operating at BVLOS ranges.

In addition to aeronautical information, the system aggregates and displays real-time data feeds of airborne traffic in proximity to the UAS, such as ADS-B data or Air Traffic Management (ATM) radar feeds, as well as live weather data.

IRIS UAS - apatial awareness platform for safely operating UAVs beyond Visual Line of Sight

IRIS UAS is a spatial awareness system that allows UAS pilots to operate safely beyond Visual Line-of-Sight (BVLOS). The system is shown here running on a Windows Surface Pro tablet.

This combined display is highly intuitive, and allows for dramatically improved airspace situational awareness - even when the UAS is under direct observation.

Utilizing these data sources IRIS UAS calculates and displays warnings, alerts and cues to the UAS operator to maintain traffic separation and avoidance. IRIS UAS has been demonstrated to be more effective than direct visual observation when tested in a series of operational flight trials in collision avoidance scenarios1.


This video gives viewers a brief overview highlighting some of the features of IRIS UAS.


Ready to Integrate with Your UAS

IRIS UAS is Ground Control Station (GCS) and Autopilot agnostic, and can be deployed on a variety of form factors, depending on the nature of the platform and the operational requirements of the mission. The IRIS UAS display system can be deployed on a tablet to augment a handheld GCS or on a laptop as part of a desktop BVLOS GCS for applications such as emergency response and search and rescue; or even deployed on a tower or rack-mounted server as a component of a full-fledged UAS operations centre. IRIS UAS has been demonstrated in NASA UTM trials and has been selected by the Government of Canada for their Emergency Airspace Operations Management System (EOAMS).

Deployable to Multiple Form Factors

Extended Visual Line-of-Sight deployment

IRIS UAS can run on a Windows Surface tablet for use in the field with portable controllers on EVLOS missions

Beyond Visual Line-of-Sight deployment

The IRIS UAS platform can be deployed on a laptop and touch screen for use with portable GCSs on BVLOS missions

Operations Center Deployment

IRIS UAS can also be deployed as a server-based component of an integrated operations centre


IRIS UAS system showing an airspace conflict with two light aircraft - Click to view full-size

Intuitive, Touch-Driven Control

The IRIS UAS airspace awareness is built around an innovative, touch-driven user interface that allows operators to easily visualize and manage multiple data feeds. Live mission and aeronautical data can be displayed as user-customizable layers on 2D and 3D maps, while additional data feeds from cameras and other sensors are shown as a series of small “display cards” within the interface. Users can swap the displays by simply dragging display cards into the main viewing area. UAS operators can control the pan, zoom, and tilt of the operational picture with multi-touch gestures, or simply set the map to follow their ownship position from a variety of preconfigured perspectives.

Cloud Integration for Data and Reporting

IRIS UAS includes cloud integration for mission planning, updating and reporting purposes. A cloud-based application provides access to aeronautical data provided by the FAA and NAV Canada for mission planning purposes, and provides an easy way to store a mission file - both as a flight data recorder function and for any Flight Operations Quality Assurance (FOQA) analysis by the operator.

Built on Operational Experience

When engineering IRIS UAS, Kongsberg Geospatial leveraged over 30 years of development of ATM displays used world-wide and over 10 years of experience in developing situational awareness software for military UAS programs including the Northrop Grumman Triton Global Hawk.

The resulting product is a uniquely mature, flexible system that provides a wealth of critical, real-time data in a deceptively simple touch-driven interface that includes common Command and Control functions.


The clean, customizable user interface makes it simple enough for UAS operators to use with minimal training. Kongsberg Geospatial is currently flight testing IRIS UAS for BVLOS operations with industry and regulatory partners, and as part of training exercises with emergency response services to gather and incorporate valuable user feedback.


  • Displays ownship UAS feeds, including telemetry and video
  • Live track data from ADS-B, Harris NEXTGEN™ and PrecisionHawk LATAS
  • Live ADSB data integration with uAvionix PingStation™
  • High-performance plotting of up to 10 000 simultaneous tracks
  • Deployable to multiple form factors, including mobile devices
  • Pilot-configurable data layers to customize display
  • Integrates feeds from cameras, sensors, and web sources
  • Simple, intuitive multi-touch user interface
  • Provides on-the-fly coordinate and unit conversion
  • Supports multiple map data formats and coordinate systems
  • High-performance 3D terrain engine
  • Consistent smooth frame rate, even on tablets
  • Support for custom symbology and track data

Product Literature:

For more product information, see the IRIS UAS product brochure:

IRIS UAS Product Brochure


1. Results cited from a 2016 trial led by Dr. Allison Ferguson, Director - Research and Education Partnerships at PrecisionHawk Inc.