Boeing and Near Earth Autonomy, a Pittsburgh-based company announced a partnership to explore products and applications in autonomous mobility for defence and civilian applications.
Boeing also announced its investment in Near Earth Autonomy which will be through Boeing HorizonX Ventures. However the quantum of investment was not revealed.
"This partnership will accelerate technology solutions that we feel will be key to unlocking emerging markets of autonomous flight," said Steve Nordlund, Boeing HorizonX vice president. "We are excited to begin this partnership with a company with such a depth of experience in autonomy so we can leverage the scale of Boeing to innovate for our customers."
The investment in Near Earth Autonomy is the first in autonomous technologies by Boeing HorizonX Ventures since it was established in April. Near Earth Autonomy, a spin-off from Carnegie Mellon University's Robotics Institute, is a leader in software and sensor technology that enables aircraft ranging from sub-meter to full scale to inspect, map and survey terrain and infrastructure, as well as transport cargo autonomously.
"This is an exciting opportunity for Near Earth," said Sanjiv Singh, CEO, Near Earth Autonomy. "The Boeing HorizonX investment will accelerate the development of robust products and enable access to a broader portfolio of applications for aerial autonomy."
Two of Near Earth's groundbreaking achievements include the world's first full-size autonomous helicopter flights in partnership with the U.S. Army in 2010 and ongoing work with the Office of Naval Research developing an autonomous aerial cargo delivery platform for the U.S. Marines.
By leveraging the power of the world's largest aerospace company, Boeing HorizonX invests in new business ventures to unlock the next generation of game-changing ideas, products, and markets.
The Boeing HorizonX Ventures portfolio includes investments in wearable enabled technologies, augmented reality systems, hybrid-electric propulsion, and artificial intelligence.