Jersey, the ideal drone testbed

When Swiss company Meteomatics wanted to test a brand-new way to forecast weather and monitor air quality, they chose Jersey as their perfect testbed. Dr Martin Fengler, the CEO of Meteomatics tells us why.


We’ve created a new approach to weather data capture that bridges the gap between the two traditional data collection points of ground level and high level (above 2 kilometres). Our solution to the data gap? A weather drone. Literally, a mini flying weather station that can gather key data in the immediate atmosphere to provide more accurate, hyper-local forecasting.

Jersey was the ideal location for us to test our Meteodrone. The island’s cutting-edge connectivity coupled with the Sandbox Jersey testbed proposition, which gave us easy access to two key infrastructure partners – their single met office and single airport, meant we were working quickly and efficiently alongside key stakeholders every step of the way.


Bridging the data gap

As an island of 45 square miles, Jersey is perfect to put our Meteodrone technology through robust testing in a real-world, campus-like environment. Our aim is to overcome the existing limitations of weather forecasting, and demonstrate our technology’s ability to bridge the current data gap.

Jersey was the ideal location for us because of the island’s cutting edge network infrastructure, connectivity, and the Sandbox Jersey testbed.

– Dr Martin Fengler, CEO, Meteomatics




Accessing key stakeholders

From the start, our relationship with Digital Jersey meant there were no barriers to our work. We were able to liaise with key stakeholders on island, and gain immediate feedback on the efficacy of our trials and their possibilities in a real world environment.

We have a number of return visits to Jersey scheduled as we continue to develop our weather forecasting technology and explore even greater opportunities alongside Jersey’s sophisticated digital sector.

As a result of our positive experiences we have already begun to introduce other world-leading technological innovators to the great team at Digital Jersey so that they too may contribute to, and benefit from, the Sandbox Jersey Proposition.

The Sandbox Proposition – a whole-country testbed

Tony Moretta, CEO of Digital Jersey, said: “This is a perfect illustration of where our Sandbox Proposition comes into its own. Meteomatics are able to tap into the infrastructure afforded by our whole-country testbed, while other developers and IoT companies in Jersey now have access to a rich, new data source from these weather drones. And, given it’s a Great British obsession, everybody loves talking about the weather.”