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Westcott Venture Park-based autonomous aerial intelligence nanodrone is ready to fly

10 June 2021
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A Buckinghamshire aerospace company is developing autonomous drones which will help frontline troops gain much needed situational awareness in even the most difficult conditions.

With the help of funding from The government's Defence and Security Accelerator Flare Bright has developed SnapShot – a ruggedized nanodrone, designed to be the simplest way to obtain aerial images at the touch of a button and send them straight to a smart phone or tablet.

SnapShot is a fully autonomous system which can easily be deployed without additional equipment and will glide back to its user whatever the weather, winds or conditions – even in GPS-denied and electromagnetically jammed environments.

DASA funding has helped Flare Bright develop their technology from prototype to a market-ready demonstration product and the company is now ready to showcase SnapShot’s to the defence and security community.

They also plan to work with stakeholders to further develop SnapShot’s capabilities. The product has already generated interest from the British Army and Royal Air Force who will be demonstrating the technology during training exercises in Summer 2021. SnapShot has also been selected for the annual US Army Expeditionary Warrior Experiment in Fort Benning, Georgia, giving US soldiers a month-long period to test and evaluate the nanodrone’s capabilities.

Chris Daniels, Chief Commercial Officer at Flare Bright said: "DASA funding has supported our credibility in the defence and security market and demonstrates confidence in our technology. It really has been a key foundation of our company’s success."

Over the last five years, Flare Bright has won new investments and contracts which enabled the company to quadruple its headcount and move to larger premises. The company is now based at Westcott Venture Park in Buckinghamshire.

In 2021 the company was awarded an Octopus Award for Entrepreneurship, to celebrate growth during the COVID-19 pandemic. They have also secured additional funding through Innovate UK’s Future Flight Challenge, a programme which aims to develop greener ways to fly by advancing electric and autonomous flight technologies.

Nicky Godding is editor of The Business Magazine. Before her journalism career, she worked mainly in public relations moving into writing when she was invited to launch Retail Watch, a publication covering retail and real estate across Europe.

After some years of constant travelling, she tucked away her passport and concentrated on business writing, co-founding a successful regional business magazine. She has interviewed some of the UK’s most successful entrepreneurs who have built multi-million-pound businesses and reported on many science and technology firsts.

She reports on the region’s thriving business economy from start-ups, family businesses and multi-million-pound corporations, to the professionals that support their growth and the institutions that educate the next generation of business leaders.

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