Europe’s first ADS-B UAT Ground Station Test Environments established by South-Eastern Finland University of Applied Sciences

The system’s own sensors can detect a drone complying with current regulations from a distance of about three kilometers. This local traffic information is supplemented with data from various other sources, and the combined traffic picture is transmitted to airborne aircraft as an ADS-B/UAT TIS-B transmission. The ground station’s transmission can be received up to over 150 kilometers away. In addition to drone and manned aircraft traffic information, the system also transmits real-time weather information and aviation notices (FIS-B transmission) to aircraft. 

The first station of Xamk’s test environment is located at Helsinki-East Aerodrome in Pyhtää and the system is already fully operational. The second test environment and ground station will be installed at Mikkeli airport in July 2024. Both stations have radio licenses granted by The Finnish Transport and Communications Agency Traficom. The test environment is part of the European UAT978 Coalition network. The NELI research unit of South-Eastern Finland University of Applied Sciences is one of the founding members of the network. Xamk has contributed to the development of the system by providing test equipment, enabling face-to-face meetings with key personnel, and committing to being the launch customer of the system as well as to further development of the new system. 

“The newly established ADSB UAT ground station is a significant leap forward in integrating manned and unmanned aviation into the same airspace. With this system, drones and other aircraft can easily be made visible to manned aircraft. Additionally, the pilot can now make decisions based on realtime information. The result of the network’s work is an excellent solution that not only enables the development of new aviation businesses but also significantly improves aviation safety. Xamk’s new test environments in South-Eastern Finland are the first in Europe to offer the opportunity to test products and services that utilize ADS-B UAT services,” says Tomi Oravasaari, Director of the NELI research unit 

The European UAT978 Coalition network is led by its organizer, long-time Finnish aviator and ViceChairman of the AOPA Finland, JP Kinos. “This system is now being built with European forces for European needs, with strong support from IAOPA Europe. The goal is to coordinate ADS-B UAT978 projects ongoing in various European countries, create a unified European solution, and expand the system across Europe. The next equipment will be installed in Norway later in June,” says JP Kinos 

The hardware supplier for the system is the Polish company AVIONIX ENGINEERING. AVIONIX CEO Ralf Heckhausen, “AVIONIX is happy that the installation went smoothly and the performance of the system is as expected. Next to the FIS-B/TIS-B transmit station our multitrack receiver with drone-cube was installed to provide the full local traffic picture. Additionally we provided our low-cost dual-band ADS-B-in onboard units to experience the benefits of UAT. We are excited to support the project and hope for more installations throughout Europe. We see the demand and the usage of the frequency seems to be possible in the end. 

The Finnish company Flyk Ltd is responsible for compiling the information transmitted by the system. The company’s founder and CEO, Juha Lindstedt, “It is incredibly exciting to be part of this initiative to develop aviation and especially aviation safety, which has been our mission from the very beginning. This represents a new and important piece for us in linking manned and unmanned aviation by sharing information among various aviation stakeholders in a modern and real-time manner.” 

The Belgian company SafeSky provides complementary traffic information. CEO Tristan Fily, “We are absolutely thrilled to embrace the UAT innovation. Unlike the American system, Europe is leading the way in making all classes of traffic visible, including General Aviation, ultra-lights, the free flight community, and even drones! With many aircraft lacking ADS-B equipment, SafeSky is enhancing the traffic picture by feeding the UAT platform from its extensive network. This is an unparalleled and truly unique development in the world!”  

The ADS-B UAT test environment of South-Eastern Finland University of Applied Sciences will be presented to the media at a press conference in Pyhtää, Finland on June 19, 2024, from 10:00 to 11:00 local time (09:00 – 10:00 CET). The location is Helsinki-East Aerodrome (Airport, Pyhtää). The event will include presentations and demonstrations. It is also possible to attend the event virtually via a Teams link.Demonstrations will only be presented on-site. The event will be held in Finnish and in English. Photos of the system will be provided on the publication day in the media bank, which can be accessed using following link.  

Teams-link removed as event has passed. 


Additional information 

Tomi Oravasaari  

Director of Reseach Unit NELI – North European Logistics Institute South-Eastern Finland University of Applied Sciences – Xamk


Phone: +358 44 702 8289  

JP Kinos  

European UAT978 Coalition Coordinator, AOPA Finland, Vice Chairman IAOPA Europe Workgroup for Coordinating ADS-B/UAT ground station projects  


Phone: +358-500-384-410 

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