Collaboration to focus on rigorous testing and safe integration of autonomous systems within the aerospace sector.

SkyGrid and NASA Work Together to Advance Emerging Aviation Operations with Autonomous Systems

Collaboration to focus on rigorous testing and safe integration of autonomous systems within the aerospace sector.

AUSTIN, Texas, May 31, 2024 – SkyGrid, a Boeing, SparkCognition company, is teaming with NASA Langley Research Center (LaRC) to collaborate on integrating services, functions, and capabilities essential for operations of Advanced Air Mobility (AAM) aircraft. This work is part of NASA Langley’s broader strategy to advance autonomous aviation and increase airspace safety and access.

Led by NASA’s System-Wide Safety Project, SkyGrid and NASA Langley will collaborate on two principal components. The first involves integrating SkyGrid’s traffic surveillance software to support distributed cooperative airspace management systems such as the Unmanned Aircraft System Traffic Management (UTM) System and Provider of Unmanned Aerial Mobility Services (PSU). This initiative will culminate in comprehensive flight demonstrations.

The second component focuses on specific use cases that aim to enhance transportation effectiveness by optimizing Unmanned Aerial Systems (UAS) operations in diverse environments within the National Airspace System (NAS) while also making essential safety considerations. In urban settings, example operations may include life-saving para-public services and efficient cargo delivery, leveraging existing and novel surveillance data and processing. This component will help calibrate and validate developed models, methods, tools, and techniques crucial for enhancing operational safety and efficiency under real-world conditions.

“Through our collaboration with SkyGrid, NASA aims to foster the integration of highly-automated systems in aviation, a step that not only enhances operational efficiency but fundamentally elevates safety standards,” said Dr. Kyle Ellis, Project Manager for NASA’s System-Wide Safety project. “The System-Wide Safety project is committed to innovating how we predict, analyze, and mitigate risks in aviation as it becomes more complex and integrated with advanced systems. By working with SkyGrid, we will leverage their technological advancements to refine our advanced safety models and tools.”

SkyGrid’s collaboration with NASA will also contribute to developing new standards and procedures that ensure the safe operation of autonomous aircraft systems. This includes sharing critical data, experiences, and insights that will help formulate safety cases, risk assessments, and safety management systems tailored to the demands of emerging aviation technologies.

“This partnership enables us to leverage NASA Langley’s unparalleled research capabilities and SkyGrid’s deep expertise in operationalizing autonomy to advance the safety and efficiency of autonomous aviation,” stated Jia Xu, CEO of SkyGrid. “By combining our efforts, we are not just aiming to advance the technology but also enhance the safety frameworks in traffic surveillance to support autonomous aviation.”


About NASA Langley

NASA’s Langley Research Center is comprised of nearly 200 facilities on 764 acres in Hampton, Virginia, and employs about 3,400 civil servants and contractors. Langley works to take revolutionary improvements to aviation, expand understanding of Earth’s atmosphere and develop technology for space exploration. For information about NASA’s System-Wide Safety Project, visit:

About SkyGrid

SkyGrid, a Boeing SparkCognition Company, exists to open the sky for autonomous flight. Based in Austin, Texas, SkyGrid builds high-assurance third-party services to enable the safe operation and integration of autonomous aircraft. SkyGrid also acts as the operational nexus for advanced air mobility, integrating and managing data, infrastructure, access, and traffic to support scaled operations.


SkyGrid Media Contact

Carla Repsold