Archives: Drones

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FAA Announces Certification of Commercial Package Delivery

We recently posted about the status of delivery by drone. Now, the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) has awarded the first air carrier certification to a drone delivery company, Wing Aviation. Wing Aviation will begin commercial package delivery in Blacksburg, Virginia. U.S. Secretary of Transportation, Elaine L. Chao, said, “This is an important step forward for … Continue Reading

UAS Industry Stakeholders Provide Feedback on FAA’s Proposed Rules

Several industry leaders and stakeholders in the unmanned aircraft system (UAS or drone) industry have provided feedback on the Federal Aviation Administration’s (FAA) proposed rules for flying drones at night and over people, as well as for drone safety and security issues. The Association for Unmanned Vehicle Systems International (AUVSI) argued in its comments that … Continue Reading

FAA Set to Approve First Drone Airline License

The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) is expected to award its first license to operate a drone airline in May. Last year, the FAA determined that large-scale commercial package delivery drone operations would require certain safety and economic certification standards like other licensed U.S. airlines. The FAA has not yet announced which company will receive that … Continue Reading

UPS and Matternet Team Up for Medical Supply Delivery Program

Last week, UPS formed a new partnership with drone developer Matternet to deliver medical samples via drone. The delivery program will take place in Raleigh, North Carolina at WakeMed’s hospital, with program oversight by the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) and the North Carolina Department of Transportation (NCDOT). Currently, medical samples and specimens are transported by … Continue Reading

Delivery by Drone: Where Are We and Where Are We Going?

Last year, the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) announced that unmanned aerial system (UAS or drone) delivery operations would be required to obtain a commercial air operator certificate issued under 14 CFR Part 119, as required by 14 CFR Part 135. This certification requires “economic authority” from the Department of Transportation (DOT) which can be given … Continue Reading

FAA Issues New National Policy—Greater Oversight of Drone Operators

Unmanned aerial systems (UAS or drone) operators will now face stricter oversight and inspections by local Flight Standards District Offices (FSDO) under the new National Policy issued by the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA). The Policy requires FSDOs to immediately update their 2019 National Work Program Guidelines to include new Required Surveillance Work Activities. Before the … Continue Reading

Drone Stakeholders Discuss UAS Integration

More than 40 unmanned aircraft systems (UAS) stakeholders from 20 global companies met with the Northeast UAS Airspace Integration Research Alliance to discuss goals and objectives of the UAS industry. During a two-day conference in Syracuse, New York, the group discussed which tests will help to advance the integration of UAS into the national airspace … Continue Reading

NASA Selects Hosts for Final Drone Technical Testing

This week, NASA selected the Nevada Institute for Autonomous Systems in Las Vegas and the Lone Star UAS Center for Excellence and Innovation in Corpus Christi, Texas to host the final phase of its four-year series of unmanned aircraft systems (UAS) technical demonstrations. Both of these organizations will host demonstrations to confirm whether NASA’s UAS … Continue Reading

New FAA Requirements for Drone Owners

This week, the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) released an updated interim rule in the Federal Register which requires drone owners to display their FAA-issued registration number on the external surface of the drone. Owners and operators may no longer place or write registration numbers in an interior compartment.  However, the final rule does not change … Continue Reading

Super Bowl Intel Drone Light Show

Intel won’t disclose exactly how it was able to participate in the Super Bowl LIII halftime show, but it did disclose that it used 150 Intel Shooting Star drones to spell out the words “ONE” and “LOVE” during the musical performance. As Maroon 5 began singing “She Will be Loved,” Intel initiated its software directing … Continue Reading

Technology Boost Helps Protect Super Bowl LIII

The biggest sporting event of the year is now over— and the Patriots, with the help of NFL super duo Tom Brady (the oldest quarterback to ever win the Super Bowl) and Bill Belichick (the oldest head coach to ever win the Super Bowl) took the title—New England’s sixth since 2002. Over 100 million people … Continue Reading

Drone Activity Halts Newark Airport Flights

Last week, reports of “drone activity” temporarily halted flights at the Newark Liberty International Airport in New Jersey. The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) had to briefly hold arrivals due to “reports of drone activity north of the airport earlier that evening.” The airport had to coordinate with the FAA and federal law enforcement authorities to … Continue Reading

Successful Flight, Boeing’s Autonomous Passenger Aircraft

Last week, Boeing completed the first test flight of its autonomous passenger aircraft prototype in Manassas, Virginia. The prototype is 30-feet long and 28-feet wide, powered by an electric propulsion system with a flight range of about 50 miles. The flight was successful, completing a controlled takeoff, hover and landing. Boeing hopes to test forward, … Continue Reading

Drone Flights Over People and at Night—Draft Regulations Released

The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) has been busy even in the midst of the government shutdown. Last week, Department of Transportation (DOT) Secretary Elaine Chao unveiled a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking for unmanned aircraft systems (UAS or drones) flights over people and at night. For flights over people, the regulation breaks UAS into three categories: … Continue Reading

Standard CGL Aircraft Exclusion Barred Liability Coverage

A California federal judge held that a standard comprehensive general liability (CGL) aircraft exclusion barred liability coverage for injuries suffered as a result of drone operations. The injuries occurred when a wedding photographer used a drone to capture images at a wedding reception and the drone hit a guest who sustained serious injuries, including loss … Continue Reading

OSHA Safety Inspections by Drones

The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) issued a memorandum last year announcing that its inspectors were now authorized to use camera-equipped unmanned aircraft systems (UAS or drones) to collect evidence during inspections. This means that OSHA inspectors are authorized to conduct in-person inspections of the workplace as well as remote-controlled aircraft inspections above the … Continue Reading

Shell Launches Drone Inspection Trial

Last month, Shell Global (Shell) announced its plan to deploy unmanned aircraft systems (UAS or drones) in a pilot project to inspect equipment at its Shell Technology Center in Houston, Texas, one of its three global technology hubs. The project is set to launch in early 2019, and Shell plans to use drones and cloud-based … Continue Reading

Vaccines Delivered by Drone in South Pacific

On the remote island of Erromango, in the South Pacific nation of Vanuatu, a one-month old child was given vaccines for hepatitis and tuberculosis via drone delivery. Not only is this unique because of the delivery method, but more than 20 percent of children under age five miss their vaccinations in Vanuatu because of the … Continue Reading

How Drones are Conducting Bridge Inspections

Last week, Intel announced two separate collaborations with the Kentucky Transportation Cabinet (KYTC) and the Minnesota Department of Transportation (MnDOT) to improve bridge inspections using drones. Intel and the KYTC have actually used its drones technology to help inspect and analyze the Daniel Carter Beard Bridge, which is an 8-lane interstate that crosses the Ohio … Continue Reading

FAA Regulations Extend to Drone Manufacturers

The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) Reauthorization Act comes with a new set of regulations for drone manufacturers. The FAAs rule is intended to impose safety standards on manufacturers. While drone operators will face stricter scrutiny and enforcement under the Act, the FAA now also wants drone manufacturers to be responsible for implementing safety standards that … Continue Reading
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