Engineering & Design

February 15, 2019

Hydrogen fuel cell-powered drone sets new flight time record

BY Patrick C. MillerMetaVista Inc., a South Korean company specializing in hydrogen power, flew a quadcopter drone for nearly 11 hours by pairing its technology with an Intelligent Energy fuel cell module. It's believed to be the longest flight time of its kind. READ MORE

February 13, 2019

Drone Graffiti Project launched at Mexico City street art fair

BY Patrick C. MillerEarlier this month, the Drone Graffiti Project was launched during Mexico City’s Art Week, one of the top street art festivals in Latin America. Innovative technology enabled graffiti artists to reach places never before possible. READ MORE

February 13, 2019

Delair releases new cloud-based aerial intelligence platform

BY Patrick C. MillerCommercial drone technology developer Delair has released a new cloud-based platform for converting drone images into actionable business insights. It provides optimized analytics for a wide variety of industries. READ MORE

February 04, 2019

NFL Super Bowl halftime show featured Intel drones

BY Intel Corp. During the Super Bowl, Intel Corp. partnered with the NFL to create the first-ever live drone lightshow during halftime. Intel and the NFL have also made advanced Intel True View highlights available for fans to relive big moments from from the game. READ MORE

February 04, 2019

Drones track bees to improve pollination and crop production

BY Patrick C. MillerA collaboration between Bee Innovative, an Australian startup company, and the University of North Dakota's UAS program will use drones to track bees. The technology has been used successfully by Australian farmers to increase crop yields. READ MORE

January 30, 2019

FLIR Systems acquires Aeryon Labs for $200 million

BY Patrick C. MillerFLIR Systems Inc. has acquired Canadian drone developer Aeryon Labs for $200 million to reinforce its long-term strategy aimed at becoming a provider of complete UAS solutions. FLIR will continue expanding its UAS capabilities into other markets. READ MORE

January 30, 2019

FAA proposes new rules to move UAS industry forward

BY Patrick C. MillerThe FAA has published notices of proposed rulemaking for drone flights over people and nighttime operations without requiring waivers from the agency. The Department of Transportation is also moving ahead to develop UAS traffic management technology. READ MORE

January 29, 2019

General Atomics collaborates with businesses in UK, Belgium

BY Patrick C. MillerGeneral Atomics Aeronautical Systems Inc. is collaborating with businesses in the United Kingdom and Belgium to support its operational and new remotely piloted aircraft systems. The Belgian team includes five businesses while the UK group has 12. READ MORE

January 29, 2019

Amazon testing commercial UAS traffic management system

BY Patrick C. MillerA team at Amazon Prime Air is working with NASA and Single European Sky ATM Research to develop a traffic management system for small UAS conducting commercial operations in the same airspace. The goal is safe operations for all drones. READ MORE

January 17, 2019

Aria Insights transforms CyPhy Works tech with new AI abilities

BY Aria Insights Founded by the team at CyPhy Works, Aria Insights is expanding upon CyPhy’s tethered drone legacy by integrating AI and machine learning software into its drones. The company will provide customers with intelligent, autonomous drones to gather data. READ MORE

January 09, 2019

Drone powered by fuel cell sets new UAS industry benchmark

BY Patrick C. MillerThe advantages of hydrogen fuel cells as a UAS power source were recently demonstrated when a 44-pound drone carried an 11-pound payload nonstop for 70 minutes, a new industry benchmark. The project is supported by Innovate UK. READ MORE

January 08, 2019

UAS could improve management of complex forest environments

BY Patrick C. MillerA research paper from the University of New Hampshire Department of Natural Resources says that drones have the potential to provide timely and accurate reference data on forests to help make better make better forest management decisions. READ MORE

January 03, 2019

High-Tech Inspections

BY Patrick C. MillerDrones and robots are seeing increasing use in the energy industry, but this technical revolution hasn’t yet caught on in the biomass energy industry. Black & Veatch and Interactive Aerial discuss potential UAS uses for the biomass market. READ MORE

January 02, 2019

FLIR Lepton camera integrated into DJI Mavic 2 Dual drone

BY Patrick C. MillerFLIR Systems and DJI will further their collaborative efforts with the integration of FLIR's Lepton micro thermal imaging camera into DJI's Mavic 2 Enterprise Dual drone. It marks their second collaboration under the Thermal by FLIR program. READ MORE

January 02, 2019

UAS BVLOS network successfully tested in eastern North Dakota

BY Patrick C. MillerThe University of North Dakota, Harris Corp. and the Northern Plains UAS Test Site have conducted successful flight tests using a BVLOS UAS network with the potential to broaden the commercial use of drones. READ MORE

January 01, 2019

Counter-UAS companies comment on Gatwick Airport drone incident

BY Patrick C. MillerDroneShield Ltd. and Dedrone Inc., two leading manufacturers of counter-UAS technologies, say the incident at the UK's Gatwick Airport which disrupted air travel for two days demonstrates the need for UAS countermeasures at large airports. READ MORE

January 01, 2019

ANSI group releases UAS standardization roadmap

BY Patrick C. MillerThe American National Standards Institute—known as ANSI—has released a UAS standards roadmap produced by its Unmanned Aircraft Systems Standardization Collaborative. The goal is to encourage a coordinated approach for UAS standards development. READ MORE

January 01, 2019

Liteye delivers counter-UAS system to Northrop Grumman

BY Patrick C. MillerColorado-based Liteye Systems Inc. last month completed delivery of a containerized anti-unmanned defense system (C-AUDS) to Northrop Grumman. The system can be customized for non-military counter-drone, surveillance and security operations. READ MORE

December 19, 2018

Austrian company develops parachute rescue system for DJI drone

BY Patrick C. MillerAustrian company Drone Rescue Systems has developed an emergency parachute system for the widely used DJI M600 drone. The lightweight system is designed to deploy a parachute in the event of a drone malfunction or total failure. READ MORE

December 18, 2018

Intel's UAS technology inspects Minnesota, Kentucky bridges

BY Patrick C. MillerIntel collaborated with transportation departments in Minnesota and Kentucky to demonstrate how its UAS technology can make bridge inspections safer and more efficient, as well as improve the reliability of data collection. READ MORE

December 14, 2018

Utility successfully conducts 60-mile BVLOS inspection flight

BY Patrick C. MillerA 60-mile BVLOS transmission line inspection test flight was successfully conducted last month by Ameren Corp., a utility with customers in Missouri and Illinois. Black & Veatch and Collins Aerospace collaborated with Ameren on the project. READ MORE

December 10, 2018

AeroVironment aids National Park Service wildfire recovery effort

BY Aeroenvironment Inc. AeroVironment Inc. is working with the National Park Service on a comprehensive drone-based aerial imaging and environmental impact study to assess fire damage in key areas of the Santa Monica Mountains Recreation Area. READ MORE

December 05, 2018

Airbus opens flight base in Australia for Zephyr UAS operations

BY Patrick C. MillerAirbus Defense and Space has opened a flight base in Western Australia for its Zephyr S high-altitude, solar-powered UAS. The base is the first operational launch site from which Airbus will fly campaigns for a variety of customers. READ MORE

December 03, 2018

FAA names Merkle new head of UAS Integration Office

BY Patrick C. MillerThe FAA has named Jay Merkle, former deputy vice president of the agency's Air Traffic Organization Program Management Office, to lead the UAS Integration Office. He has more than 25 years of experience in engineering and program management. READ MORE

December 03, 2018

DARPA shows UAS can operate with limited communications

BY Patrick C. MillerCan UAS flying in contested airspace with degraded communications operate effectively? Recent tests demonstrated that DARPA's Collaborative Operations in Denied Environments (CODE) technology enabled drones to function with minimal communications. READ MORE

November 30, 2018

Tragic South African fires inspire search and rescue drone

BY Patrick C. MillerThe loss of a helicopter pilot while fighting fires in South Africa inspired drone developer and manufacturer ALTI UAS to create the Transition SAR Orange, a vertical-takeoff-and-landing UAS specialized for search-and-rescue missions. READ MORE

November 29, 2018

Belgium, Australia to acquire General Atomics UAS platforms

BY Patrick C. MillerThe defense forces of Belgium and Australia have been authorized to acquire UAS designed and built by General Atomics Aeronautical Systems Inc. Belgium will negotiate to buy the SkyGuardian and Australia will purchase the armed Reaper. READ MORE

November 29, 2018

Honeywell Aerospace starts UAV inspection service in India

BY Honeywell Aerospace Honeywell Aerospace is launching a commercial Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (UAV) Inspection and Data Analytics Service in India. Targeted at utilities and oil and gas companies, the service helps customers across the country improve and modernize. READ MORE

November 21, 2018

Flexible hybrid electronics have commercial UAS applications

BY Patrick C. MillerLockheed Martin and Georgia Tech are exploring ways to use flexible hybrid electronics to give small UAS beyond-line-of-sight capability using satellite communications. They are members of NextFlex, an organization that advances FHE technologies. READ MORE

November 20, 2018

Hyundai partners with American company to speed UAS development

BY Patrick C. MillerSouth Korea's Hyundai Motor Co. has formed a partnership with Boston-based Top Flight Technologies to cultivate new UAS business opportunities based on Top Flight's hybrid-electric power systems that provide longer flight times and heavier payloads. READ MORE