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Cross-border monitoring and surveillance campaign deployed over the eastern Baltic Sea

Nordic Unmanned is assisting the European Maritime Safety Agency (EMSA) in a regional operation involving national authorities from Finland, Estonia and Latvia using remotely piloted aircraft systems (RPAS) for monitoring and surveillance. During the operation which began in May 2022, Textron Systems’ Aerosonde™ Unmanned Aircraft System (UAS) is being deployed over the eastern Baltic Sea area in support of the Estonian Police and Border Guard Board, the Finnish Border Guard and the Latvian Coast Guard Service. This is the first time the Aerosonde system is flying in European civil airspace under the Light UAS Operator Certificate (LUC).

While the flight data is shared in real time among the three participating countries via EMSA’s RPAS Data Centre, the flights themselves are also cross-border in nature with the aircraft able to cross from the airspace of one participating country into that of another.

As contractor of EMSA, Nordic Unmanned is operating the RPAS in support of various maritime and border safety tasks, including surveillance related to environmental protection and law enforcement. Typical tasks assigned to a remotely piloted aircraft include locating and identifying objects, various surveillance and search and rescue tasks. It is a cost-effective solution that significantly improves the performance of maritime surveillance. The RPAS can provide situational images in emergency situations that support the maritime rescue operation. In addition, the RPAS is discreet, providing improved surveillance capabilities to the authorities concerned.

“We are very excited to deliver the cross-border monitoring and surveillance campaign using the fixed-wing system to authorities in Estonia, Finland and Latvia. This is the first time Textron Systems’ Aerosonde UAS is flying in European Civil Airspace, operating under the LUC. Providing surveillance services, the system deployed from a hub location is using a spoke location to extend its range beyond the radio line of sight of the initial location. Equipped with a SAR (synthetic aperture radar), it provides high quality and real-time information to authorities about maritime activities”

Knut Roar Wiig, CEO Nordic Unmanned

This regional operation is one of multiple, simultaneous European deployments for Nordic Unmanned.


Nordic Unmanned is global leader of high-end products and services related to drones and data capture. Through worldwide operational experience and industry-leading expertise, Nordic Unmanned supports large governmental and industrial clients in the adaption of unmanned systems and services.

Founded in 2014, the Group has offices in Sandnes, Oslo, Molde, Odense (DK), Cranfield (UK) and Arnsberg (GER) and has quickly become one of Europe’s leading providers of unmanned systems and services, with operations across the continent. The Group is ISO 9001-2015 and certified by for the operation, maintenance, sale, design, development, and production, of unmanned systems and sensor technology. The production is also AS9100 certified. For more information visit


The European Maritime Safety Agency (EMSA) is a decentralised agency of the EU, based in Lisbon, Portugal. EMSA serves the EU’s maritime interests for a safe, secure, green and competitive maritime sector, delivering value for member states through support for pollution prevention and response, maritime surveillance, safety and security, digitalisation and the provision of integrated maritime services, and technical assistance.

Remotely Piloted Aircraft System (RPAS) services are offered free of charge to all EU countries by EMSA. They have been developed to assist in maritime surveillance operations and ship emission monitoring and can operate in all seas surrounding the European Union. RPAS services can provide support to traditional coast guard functions, including search and rescue and pollution prevention and response. The services are offered to member countries individually and as part of EMSA’s regional RPAS strategy, which allows multiple coast guard functions in several EU countries to be supported by one or more RPAS services. See where EMSA is flying.