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1. (WO2019048815) AUTOMATED SAFETY SYSTEM FOR AIRCRAFT
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CLAIMS

1 . A safety system controller for an aircraft, the safety system controller comprising:

a safety means;

a power source for powering the safety means;

a pressure detector for detecting air pressure; and

a switch for activating the safety means,

wherein the pressure detector is arranged to close the switch to activate the safety means when the air pressure exceeds a value indicative of a pre-set altitude.

2. The safety system controller according to claim 1 , wherein the pressure detector is arranged to open the switch to deactivate the safety means when the air pressure decreases below a value indicative of the operating altitude of the aircraft being reached.

3. The safety system controller according to claim 2, wherein the switch is arranged electrically between the power source and the safety means.

4. The safety system controller according to any one of the preceding claims, wherein the safety means comprises a transponder, a light source and a means for determining the location of the safety system controller.

5. The safety system controller according to claim 4, wherein the means for determining the location comprises a Global Navigation Satellite System [GNSS] receiver and antenna.

6. The safety system controller according to claim 4 or claim 5, wherein the safety system controller comprises a housing, wherein the housing comprises the power source, pressure detector, transponder and switch.

7. The safety system controller according to claim 6, wherein the light source, GNSS receiver and antenna, and a transponder antenna are connected to the power source and the transponder through an aperture in the housing.

8. The safety system controller according to claim 5, wherein the housing further comprises the light source, GNSS receiver and antenna and a transponder antenna.

9. The safety system controller according to any one of claims 5 to 8, wherein the housing is permanently attached to an airframe of the aircraft using a low temperature adhesive.

10. The safety system controller according to any one of the preceding claims, wherein the power source is a battery.

1 1 . An aircraft comprising the safety system controller according to any one of the preceding claims.

12. The aircraft according to claim 1 1 , wherein the aircraft is configured to descend when a failure in a safety system is detected.

13. The aircraft according to claim 1 1 or claim 12, comprising a pressure detector tube extending to a point on the exterior surface of an airframe of the aircraft to allow the external air pressure to be sensed, the pressure detector tube being attached to the pressure detector and the switch.

14. The aircraft according to any one of claims 1 1 to 13, wherein the aircraft is an unmanned solar-powered aircraft.

15. A method of activating a safety device for an aircraft, the method comprising: detecting air pressure external to the aircraft;

closing a switch to activate a safety means if the air pressure is exceeds a value indicative of a pre-set altitude; and

opening the switch to deactivate the safety means when the air pressure decreases below a value indicative of the operating altitude of the aircraft being reached.