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Nomoko gets SORA approval to begin drone operations in Luxembourg

September 22, 2021

Zürich, Switzerland, September 22, 2021 — Swiss startup Nomoko has taken a giant step forward in its mission to take its Digital Twin solutions for real estate beyond the borders of Switzerland. With the approval of its first SORA (Specific Operations Risk Assessment) application by the Direction de l’Aviation Civile (DAC), Nomoko is conducting its inaugural EU-compliant drone capture service in Luxembourg, marking the start of its journey to expand its Digital Twin services into the whole of Europe.

Nowadays, flying a drone in the European Union, Switzerland and US, requires legal authorizations. Aware that new EU legislation introduced at the start of 2021 would make SORA a compulsory requirement for complex drone operations in Europe, Nomoko began its application in 2020. Obtaining the permit in September 2021 was testimony not only to the complexity and challenges involved but also to the tenacity and dedication of the Nomoko team to becoming EU compliant.

What is SORA?

SORA is a mandatory requirement set forth by the Direction de l’Aviation Civile (DAC) that necessitates the development of a risk assessment methodology that is reusable and applicable for seeking permission to operate drones in specific high risk environments. A 10-step process, it details where, when and how Nomoko can perform drone operations without endangering people and objects in the air and on the ground, explaining the risks involved and the measures taken to mitigate them.

Being awarded a SORA permit means Nomoko has created a detailed and robust methodology for its approach to drone operations in Europe, often over busy, densely populated environments.

From drone capture to Digital Twins

Drone operations are the first step in creating Digital Twins. Through its custom-built 3D modeling process, Nomoko can convert 2D drone images into georeferenced real-scale 3D models at a much faster rate and in a more scalable way than existing methods at this level of accuracy. Entire cities in extreme detail in weeks, not months.

Nomoko is combining these models with real-world, real-time data to deliver a range of spatial services for any industry and its first solution bringing digital transformation to real estate, Nomoko Store.

Nomoko CEO and cofounder Nilson Kufus commented, “SORA is an important step towards scaling 3D models and Digital Twins of Europe and vital to our mission to create a machine-readable world. The potential of Digital Twins for real estate in particular is very significant – not only to digitalize and disrupt the workings of the real estate industry, the largest financial asset class in the world, but also to make it much more sustainable.”

UAV operations manager Juan Vinuales added, “Approval has thrown up many challenges. This is a totally new framework for the DAC, Luxembourg’s National Aviation Authority, which meant we had to overcome unexpected hurdles – for example, some of the certification standards for things like parachutes were yet to be defined, making them hard to meet. But, getting SORA approval establishes Nomoko as a reference company for safe UAV operations and helps us extend our spatial services into other EU countries.”

About Nomoko

Nomoko is a Swiss startup unlocking the power of Digital Twins one industry at a time. Founded in 2015 by Nilson Kufus (CEO), Vincent Pedrini (CFO) and Kevin Mersch, Nomoko is on a mission to make the physical world accessible as a digital ecosystem that creates new solutions to visualize and analyze spatial data and location intelligence for industry specific purposes.

Selected as part of the Fit 4 Start acceleration program in Luxembourg in 2016, Nomoko was funded by the EU’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation program and has been listed in the top 100 Swiss startups four years in a row. It won the 26th Prix Strategis Best Swiss Startup 2019, the 22nd IMD Startup Competition 2019/20 and is the winner of the Swiss Prime Site Startup Accelerator as ‘Innovator in Smart Cities, Smart Buildings & Mobility’.

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