News & Updates

Kick-off meeting of ÉALÚ-AER project

Kick-off meeting of ÉALÚ-AER project


Shannon, Ireland, 18/11/2022


The European Project ÉALÚ-AER (Enhanced Automation for U-space/ATM Integration) had its official kick-off meeting on the 15th of November 2022 in Shannon at Future Mobility Campus Ireland (FMCI). ÉALÚ-AER is a three-year project that involves Irish and European partners including FMCI (Coordinator), The Shannon Airport Group, the Irish Aviation Authority, Collins Aerospace (Ireland, UK and France), Dublin-based Avtrain, Manna and Deep Blue in Italy.


ÉALÚ-AER is one of the first European Digital Sky Demonstrators to focus on U-space and Urban Air Mobility as part of the European ATM Master Plan designed by the SESAR Joint Undertaking (JU). SESAR JU aims at accelerating through research and innovation the delivery of an inclusive, resilient, and sustainable Digital European Sky.


Digital Sky Demonstrators, such as ÉALÚ-AER, are high-level Technology Readiness Level (TRL 7-8) projects that are funded in collaboration with the European Climate, Infrastructure and Environment Executive Agency (CINEA) under the Connected Europe Facility (CEF) funding instrument.


Minister of State for Transport, Hildegarde Naughton TD visited FMCI on the 27th of October 2022 where she had an insightful conversation about the project with Russell Vickers, CEO of FMCI and Wassim Derguech, COO of FMCI. Minister Naughton said “I am delighted that a project like this is taking place in Shannon. It will have a very important impact on the aviation industry in Ireland and beyond.”


L-R: Bob Flynn – National Contact Point & Delegate for Climate, Energy and Mobility. Russell Vickers – CEO FMCI. Minister Hildegarde Naughton. Wassim Derguech – COO, FMCI

This kick-off meeting of the ÉALÚ-AER project started by a tour of the Shannon Airport with a brief history of its humble beginnings and its success in introducing the world’s first duty-free shop. The next stop was a visit to the Shannon Air Traffic Control (ATC). In collaboration with the Irish Aviation Authority, the consortium members of ÉALÚ-AER project had access to the ATC Tower with an open conversation on how the interaction with the ATC team will ease the execution of the ÉALÚ-AER project Use-Cases.

Visit of the ÉALÚ-AER team to Shannon ATC and FMCI AAM Hub

As the work will be based at FMCI’s Advanced Aerial Mobility (AAM) Research Test and Development Facilities at Shannon, the consortium members had a visit to FMCI AAM Hub, Data and Control Centre with a demonstration by Collins Aerospace of the aircraft tracking and alerting features of the Uncrewed Aircraft System (UAS) digital platform, namely WebUAS.

The main section of the meeting was opened by Dr. Wassim Derguech the COO of Future Mobility Campus Ireland coordinator of the Project. Then SEASAR JU Programme Manager, Cengiz Ari, gave an overview of the SEASAR JU vision and overall alignment with ATM Master Plan. In the following, CINEA Project Officer, Pamela Piech, went through the guidelines and key aspects of the implementation of the grant agreement. After that, representatives of ÉALÚ-AER consortium members gave brief introduction of their organizations highlighting the importance of this project, their commitment and enthusiastic support for the successful execution. Finally, each of the work packages leaders outlined their objectives, tasks, and collaboration plans for the duration of the project.


“We are pleased to see our facilities used for developing and hosting research and innovation projects such as ÉALÚ-AER benefiting Shannon, Ireland and Europe.” says Dr. Wassim Derguech, COO of Future Mobility Campus Ireland


“The Irish Aviation Authority Air Navigation Service Provider recognizes the value of this project and is looking forward to investigating and defining with the rest of the consortium members the possible Regulatory and Standardisation recommendations for implementing safe drone operations in a Controlled Airspace.” says Cathal Mac Criostail, IAA Manager Airspace and Navigation at Irish Aviation Authority

For Information, or interview with any of the parties involved in this Shannon-based project and consortium, contact:


Project Coordinator

Dr. Wassim Derguech

COO, Future Mobility Campus Ireland

Email: [email protected]


Communication Manager

Linda Portoghese

Email: [email protected]


ABOUT Future Mobility Campus Ireland (FMCI)

FMCI is the first complete development centre and full-scale testbed in Ireland, based in the Shannon Freezone and operating across Europe. The facility focuses on comprehensive mobility technologies that span both ground (autonomous driving, micro-mobility, smart cities, V2X communications) and air (unmanned drones, eVTOL, AAM, UTM) uses.

The facility is supporting a range of parties, from individual researchers to multi-national corporations, to start-ups and Government entities, to conceive, develop, trial, and deploy societally-transformative transport solutions in Shannon and across Ireland.

Visit  to learn more about the organisation.

ABOUT The Irish Aviation Authority

The Irish Aviation Authority (IAA) is a commercial semi-state company employing over 700 people at six locations around Ireland. The IAA has two main functions: the regulation of the civil aviation industry in Ireland and the provision of air traffic management and related services in Irish controlled airspace.

The IAA is currently undergoing a process of structural change. Air navigation service provision (including air traffic control) will be separated out as a stand-alone entity, and the Commission for Aviation Regulation will be merged with the IAA.

Visit to learn more about the organisation.


ABOUT Collins Aerospace

Collins Aerospace, a Raytheon Technologies business, is a leader in technologically advanced and intelligent solutions for the global aerospace and defence industry. Collins Aerospace has the extensive capabilities, comprehensive portfolio and broad expertise to solve customers’ toughest challenges and to meet the demands of a rapidly evolving global market. For information,

visit to learn more about the organisation.

ABOUT Avtrain

Avtrain is one of Europe’s leading Drone Pilot & Operator training and certification organisations, offering consultancy services for large scale projects. Avtrain is an EASA Recognised Entity, issued by the Irish Aviation Authority, for the grant of Open Category A2 and all Specific Category Authorisations, Declarations and Light UAS operator Certificate (LUC), providing independent verification of compliance to a high level of robustness.

See to learn about us or email [email protected]


The Shannon Airport Group is focused on helping to deliver a vibrant, thriving economy in our region. We do this by having an airport that provides vital air connectivity for businesses and tourism; and a portfolio of property solutions to make our region an attractive location in which to establish and grow a business. We embrace smart and green technologies, and our campus features one of Ireland’s largest multi-sectoral business parks. It is home to a diverse range of dynamic businesses including those developing solutions in the autonomous mobility space. All making Shannon an exciting region to work, live, visit and a great place to set up a business.

Visit to learn more about the organisation.


ABOUT Deep Blue

Deep Blue is an Italian research and consultancy SME specialised in human factor, safety, security, validation and scientific dissemination. The company operates in context with high security, dependability and resilience requirements, such as Air Traffic Management (ATM), Aviation, Railways Transportation, Industry 4.0 and Healthcare. The main area of activity of the company is the analysis and evaluation of interactive complex systems, with particular focus on the interactions, integration and allocation of functions between humans, procedures and equipment. Deep Blue has a broad experience in carrying out facilitation processes and dissemination activities with different types of stakeholders in R&D projects.

Visit to learn more about the organisation.

ABOUT Manna Drone Delivery

Manna is a business-to-customer drone delivery company. The operations headquarters are based in NovaUCD, Dublin, Ireland. Manna’s mission is making high-speed suburban deliveries affordable, green, and safe. Manna designs and builds their aviation-grade drones to deliver food and other items directly from restaurants, centralized kitchens, and local stores to consumers’ homes.

Visit learn more about the organisation.