Policy & Regulation

December 06, 2018

FAA campaign reminds new drone owners to fly safely

BY Patrick C. MillerTo help those who purchase or receive new drones during the holiday season, the FAA has created "Buzzy the Drone." The agency's animated character uses social media to give new drone pilots hints and tips on safe and responsible flying. 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

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 13, 2018

DHS explores machine learning to improve drone detection

BY Patrick C. MillerCombining cameras with machine learning technology, the U.S. Department of Homeland Security and Sandia National Labs are developing ways to make the visual identification of drones as precise and reliable as thermal, radio or acoustic signatures. READ MORE

November 09, 2018

Micro-weather forecasts for UAS will be tested in New York

BY Patrick C. MillerCustomWeather Inc. and TruWeather Solutions have formed a partnership aimed at developing micro-weather forecasts for BVLOS UAS operations. The technology will be tested in the NUAIR Alliance UAS traffic management corridor. READ MORE

November 07, 2018

Robird drone convinces bird flocks to move away from airports

BY Patrick C. MillerA drone that looks and flies like a peregrine falcon is convincing flocks of birds to move away from busy airports where they're a threat to manned aviation. The Robird has proved its worth at the Grand Forks International Airport in North Dakota. READ MORE

November 01, 2018

AUVSI launches Trusted Operator Program for UAS operators

BY Association for Unmanned Vehicle Systems International AUVSI is launching a new Trusted Operators Program for UAS pilots and training organizations to improve safety through a higher standard of professionalism. TOP certification provides an AUVSI seal of approval above and beyond FAA requirements. READ MORE

October 29, 2018

Insitu, FAA hold meeting to demonstrate UAS type certification

BY Insitu Inc. Insitu Inc. recently collaborated with the FAA to complete the first Type Certification Board Meeting in support of its ScanEagle 3. Four FAA teams met at Insitu's headquarters in Bingen, Washington, to review the proposed 2019 type certification. READ MORE

October 25, 2018

In-Flight Data, senseFly collaborate on urban BVLOS project

BY Patrick C. MillerCanadian drone operator In-Flight Data and Swiss UAS manufacturer senseFly have collaborated on North America's first BVLOS project in a major city. Mapping data was collected for a new cemetery planned in Calgary, Alberta. READ MORE

October 25, 2018

PrecisionHawk chosen as DJI’s airspace data provider

BY PrecisionHawk Inc. PrecisionHawk has been named as DJI's new provider of North American airspace data. Under the partnership, PrecisionHawk's Low Altitude Traffic and Airspace Safety platform will be used to improve DJI's geofencing technology. READ MORE

October 22, 2018

DJI demands drone strike research, video be withdrawn

BY Patrick C. MillerResearch comparing the results of drone and bird strikes on manned aircraft drew a critical response from DJI, the world's largest drone manufacturer. The company demanded that the University of Dayton Research Institute withdraw its research. READ MORE

October 22, 2018

Avitas Systems to fly BVLOS drone inspections in Texas

BY Patrick C. MillerBoston-based Avitas Systems has received approval from the FAA to use radar for commercial BVLOS drone operations in Texas. The company will be inspecting oil and gas infrastructure for Shell Oil Co., a first step toward expanded UAS operations. READ MORE

October 18, 2018

Study shows need for small UAS geofencing near busy airports

BY Patrick C. MillerA new study from Embry-Riddle Aeronautics University of DJI drone flights near Daytona Beach International Airport in Florida shows the need for geofencing. The study found that about 20 percent of the flights presented a risk to manned aircraft. READ MORE

October 10, 2018

What does the FAA Reauthorization Act mean to the UAS industry?

BY Patrick C. MillerThe new FAA Reauthorization Act will not only open the door for more commercial opportunities within the UAS industry, but also provide a better-defined regulatory path forward. Aviation attorneys and industry insiders discussed the key takeaways. READ MORE

October 08, 2018

Trump signs FAA Reauthorization Act containing key UAS measures

BY Patrick C. MillerThe FAA Reauthorization Act of 2018 passed by Congress with broad bipartisan support and signed into law last week by President Donald Trump was greeted with optimism by the commercial UAS industry, but hobbyist drone pilots are less enthused. READ MORE

October 05, 2018

Kansas tech company unveils two new drone detection radars

BY Patrick C. MillerKansas-based Ainstein has introduced a new air-to-air radar for UAS platforms and a new ground-based radar capable of detecting drones more than 3,200 feet away. Both feature digital beam forming for precise measurements and 3D detection. READ MORE

October 04, 2018

General Atomics’ second SkyGuardian completes first flight

BY Patrick C. MillerGeneral Atomics Aeronautical Systems Inc. last week successfully completed the first flight of a second SkyGuardian MQ-9B, the remotely piloted aircraft the company says will be the first certified to fly in civil airspace. READ MORE

October 02, 2018

FAA approves nine new LAANC service providers

BY Federal Aviation Administration The FAA has approved nine new partners to the Low Altitude Authorization and Notification Capability (LAANC) initiative, which provides near real-time processing of airspace authorizations for Part 107 drone operators flying in controlled airspace. READ MORE

September 27, 2018

AUVSI, CTA back UAS provisions in FAA reauthorization bill

BY Patrick C. MillerAUVSI and the Consumer Technology Association says UAS provisions in the FAA reauthorization bill passed by the U.S. House this week will help move the industry forward and safely integrate UAS into the national airspace. READ MORE

September 26, 2018

NUAIR Alliance partners with Thales for UAS traffic management

BY Patrick C. MillerThe NUAIR Alliance will partner with Thales, an international air traffic management company, to help integrate unmanned aircraft into controlled airspace. The agreement will also support New York's 50-mile UAS corridor between Rome and Syracuse. READ MORE

September 20, 2018

Kansas State using drones to improve agriculture, human health

BY Patrick C. MillerUAS flown by Kansas State University researchers and students are part of a project designed to collect data on the prescribed burns used to maintain agricultural productivity. The goal is to limit the human health impacts from smoke. READ MORE

September 10, 2018

Bell Helicopter collaborates on NASA UAS demonstration project

BY Bell Helicopter Bell Helicopter will collaborate with several other organizations under a cooperative agreement with NASA to conduct a UAS flight demonstration in the national airspace scheduled for 2020. Bell will use its Autonomous Pod Transport for the flight. READ MORE

September 05, 2018

Altiscope releases blueprint for safe UAS integration

BY Patrick C. MillerThe unmanned traffic management group of Airbus has released a "Blueprint for the Skies" to provide for the safe integration of autonomous aircraft. The blueprint is the result of months of analysis by Airbus on future airspace needs. READ MORE

August 29, 2018

Grand Sky UAS tech park launches first BVLOS flight

BY Patrick C. MillerCapitalizing on a recent FAA authorization, General Atomics flew its first beyond-visual-line-of-sight mission using an unmanned aircraft flown from the Grand Sky UAS tech park adjacent to the Grand Forks Air Force Base in North Dakota. READ MORE

August 29, 2018

Drone Delivery Canada conducts successful tests

BY Patrick C. MillerUAS technology company Drone Delivery Canada has successfully completed beyond visual line of sight testing in Alma, Quebec, using its software platform and delivery drone. The company says it's close to commercializing its technology. READ MORE

August 29, 2018

Insitu uses ScanEagle to assist firefighters in Oregon

BY Insitu Insitu is once again employing its ScanEagle UAS to help battle wildfires in the northwest U.S. The company's Mobile Response Team has been assisting firefighters in Oregon by providing data collection and analysis for fire suppression activities. READ MORE

August 20, 2018

ND DOT, UAS partners complete test for flights over people

BY North Dakota Department of Transportation The North Dakota Department of Transportation and Northern Plains UAS Test Site have announced the successful completion of testing Unmanned Aircraft Systems for flights over people with partners Botlink, Parazero and CNN. READ MORE

August 15, 2018

Komatsu America selects Propeller Aero's drone mapping software

BY Patrick C. MillerKomatsu America has selected Propeller Aero's drone mapping and analytics software for its Smart Construction Initiative. Propeller says its software can make mapping a construction project up to 90 percent more efficient. READ MORE

August 15, 2018

FAA authorizes Northern Plains UAS Test Site to fly BVLOS

BY Patrick C. MillerThe FAA has authorized the Northern Plains UAS Test Site to fly beyond visual-line-of-sight missions without chase aircraft from the Grand Sky technology park. Grand Sky is adjacent to the Grand Forks Air Force Base in northeastern North Dakota. READ MORE