The Zurich-based startup, founded in 2016, has recently secured additional investors in their latest funding round. The funding round was led by Carthona Capital, with other investing VCs such as Redalpine and Amino Capital. Three former engineering managers of Daedalean’s founder and CEO, Dr Luuk van Dijk, back in his times at Google, are also investing as business angels. 

Swiss AI startup Daedalean has announced new funding in their development of the first certifiable AI for autonomous pilot and flight control, to a total of $113 million USD.

Daedalean is focused on building software for safety critical avionics, integrating modern robotics, computer vision and deep AI. According to the company the endgoal is to develop and certify the world first DAL-A rated autopilot – the highest safety-critical level for a fully autonomous flight. With this latest influx in capital, Daedalean can continue their development. Currently, the company plans to release “a safety enhancing solution at DAL-C (the Design Assurance Level set for software at the major level of safety-criticalness as defined by aviation authorities)” in 2021; the software is aimed at both conventional and eVTOL aircraft. Daedalean, with partners, is conducting flight tests and working on certifying its solutions with major aviation authorities (EASA, FAA). 

Dr Harald Nieder, Partner at Redalpine, said: “The Daedalean team is bringing some of the most advanced technology in computer vision and machine learning to aviation, redefining one of the biggest industries. With the surge in new aircraft models, like vertical take-off and landing, future air mobility will be much more individual, flexible and accessible. However, to make it truly scalable, comprehensive autonomy will be required. As a consequence, the big players in this new aviation landscape will be the autonomy providers. This is where we see the big opportunity with Daedalean. It’s a great case of huge commercial potential, while being strongly differentiated by technology.”

The company was founded in 2016 by a team of engineers with backgrounds in companies like Google and SpaceX. As of July 2019, its team includes 20+ software engineers, as well as avionics specialists and pilots. Daedalean works with major eVTOL companies and leading aerospace manufacturers to specify, build, test and certify a fully autonomous sensor and autopilot system that can reliably and completely replace the human pilot. It has developed systems demonstrating crucial capabilities on a path to certification for airworthiness. Currently the company is working with EASA on an Innovation Partnership Contract to develop concepts of design assurance for neural networks. 

To learn more. visit Daedalean’s website here.

Why it’s important: Complete autonomy will be a key enabler for future personal air taxi services. Building the world’s first DAL-A rated autopilot – the highest safety-critical level for a fully autonomous flight — will empower future air mobility, drastically improving the rate at which eVTOLs enter the market, and bring closer the future of urban air mobility. 

Sources // Daedalean Press Release

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