Lars Illum

Experienced aeronautical engineer to make drones mainstream 

Denmark’s national drone test center, UAS Denmark Test Center, is strengthening its competencies in the development and optimisation of drone technologies. Lars Illum Jørgensen, who has more than 25 years of experience from the airborne defence industry in particular, will be the new business developer from 1 October.

There are few Danes with a CV that has as much air under the wings as Lars Illum Jørgensen.

With more than 20 years of experience from the aerospace and defence industry, especially a number of positions and responsibilities at Airbus Defence & Space, he is now being brought home to Denmark, where he will help the national drone test center UAS Denmark Test Center at HCA Airport to develop and disseminate tomorrow’s drone technologies in areas such as green aviation, defence and health – including facilitating the development of the airspace of the future, shared by both drones and traditional manned air traffic.

In short, Lars Illum Jørgensen will contribute to making drones as natural a part of the airspace as the manned aircraft that his career has so far centerd around.

– UAS Denmark Test Center combines everything that makes the drone industry exciting right now. They have a vibrant environment and work with development, startups and infrastructure, and with both an airport and airspace at their disposal, there is great potential to invite partners to visit and create great results together. Drone technology is still at a stage where development can go in many directions and I am very much looking forward to being part of finding the right path, says Lars Illum Jørgensen.

He leaves a position as Chief Engineer for Airbus’ Eurofighter Tranche 4 programme and will start working in Odense on 1 October. He is originally from Svendborg and has lived on Funen for the first 20 years of his life.

Northern European hotspot for drone technology
UAS Denmark Test Center is establishing itself as a Northern European hotspot for research, education, development, testing and application of drone technology. Approximately 3,000 drone operations were conducted at the center in 2022, and companies such as Falck, Boing Insitu and QuadSAT are among the users of the center’s facilities and airspace.

The hiring of Lars Jørgensen is thus part of UAS Denmark Test Center’s ambition to attract even more activities to the test center in the coming years.

– It is a great advantage for us that Lars brings experience from both the civil and military aviation industry. Both are in rapid development, and therefore his competences and network are worth their weight in gold. It is difficult to find capabilities that have the same experience with both business development and military projects combined with a great interest in and knowledge of education, research and international collaborations, says Michael Larsen, Head of UAS Denmark Test Center.

Internationally recognised facilities
As one of the only drone test centers in Europe, UAS Denmark Test Center has test and laboratory facilities, an airspace that extends well into the Kattegat and a business park with a number of resident drone companies and research institutions.

The test center is located at HCA Airport in Odense and is a collaboration between the University of Southern Denmark, Odense Municipality and HCA Airport.

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