Tag Archives: Drone

http://spectrum.ieee.org/automaton/robotics/aerial-robots/north-dakota-first-faa-approved-drone-test-site

Source from: http://spectrum.ieee.org/automaton/robotics/aerial-robots/north-dakota-first-faa-approved-drone-test-site
Photo: Draganfly

The Draganflyer X4-ES drone.

Whether or not the U.S. Federal Aviation Administration has the authority to approve or regulate or monitor or oversee or whatever they want to do about unmanned aerial systems (UAS), the fact is more and more people are flying these systems everywhere.

Technically, you’re not supposed to fly drones out of visual range, more than 400 feet in the air, or closer than five miles to any sort of controlled airspace (including the Class B airspace that’s in place over most urban areas), without getting an an experimental airworthiness certificate (which specifically precludes carrying cargo) and applying for a Certificate of Waiver or Authorization (COA).

Most people, of course, do not pay any attention to any of this whatsoever, because flying drones is cheap, easy, and fun, and everybody is doing it, so why worry?

The worry, of course, is that some drone somewhere is going to crash and hurt someone or damage property or unlawfully spy on someone or, much worse, collide with a manned aircraft and cause an accident. This could lead to an immediate and harsh crack down that puts drones on its heels.

The FAA is not clueless about any of this, and while the fact that they’re a government bureaucracy doesn’t make them the most nimble organization in existence, they’re at least trying to push for some progress toward intelligent and flexible UAS guidelines.

At the end of last year, the FAA announced the selection of six UAS research and test sites that’ll be used to figure out how to properly regulate drones, and the first of these, in North Dakota, will be open for flight operations next month.

The FAA picked North Dakota because it was the only potential area to offer “a test range in the Temperate (continental) climate zone and included a variety of different airspace which will benefit multiple users.”

By the summer of this year, drones will have access to two separate areas: one at North Dakota State University’s Carrington Research Extension Center (here-ish), and one in Sullys Hill National Game Preserve (here). The first UAS to get tested out at the North Dakota site will be Draganflyer X4-ES, mounting a multispectral imaging system from Tetracam for soil quality assessment and crop health mapping.

The main goal of this site’s initial operations is to show that UAS can check soil quality and the status of crops in support of North Dakota State University/Extension Service precision agriculture research studies. Precision agriculture is one of many industries that represent areas for significant economic opportunity and UAS-industry expansion.

While supporting the precision agriculture project, the Northern Plains Unmanned Aircraft Systems Test Site also will collect safety-related operational data needed for UAS airspace integration. The information will help the FAA analyze current processes for establishing small UAS airworthiness and system maturity. Maintenance data collected during site operations will support a prototype database for UAS maintenance and repair.

Agriculture is likely to be one of the first areas in which drones might be able to establish themselves as a viable business, which is part of the reason that the FAA is starting there. Companies like SenseFly already have mature systems all ready to go: the eBee Ag will do fire-and-forget multispectral crop imaging right out of the box, and the only thing holding it back right now are FAA regulations: they’re already being used (quite successfully) in Europe, while we’re all waiting around here in the United States twiddling our thumbs.

The Future of Sports Photography: Drones

Drones are being used to film ski and snowboarding events at the Winter Olympics in Sochi, as you may have noticed. But the use of unmanned aerial vehicles for sports photography is far from a passing gimmick. In fact, you should expect more and more athletic events to be filmed by drone.

Remo Masina isn’t involved in shooting the Olympics, but he’s already familiar with drones’ finesse for filming winter sports: He uses them to film skiers for commercials. The drones are quieter and cheaper than a manned helicopter (though they can still cost up to $40,000), he told the Associated Press, and they allow the filmmaker to get much closer to his subject.

Drones are also more flexible than cable-suspended camera systems, which are also present at the Winter Olympics. While live transmission is tricky—it requires an extra transmitter, which weighs on the drone—Masina says he’s flown such devices at over 40 mph while delivering live, high-definition video.

Masina says that drones are “for sure” the future of sports broadcasting. UK company HeliPOV, which provides drones on which to mount existing cameras, has some great examples of just how cool the resulting video can be:

 

It won’t take long for drones to be fully integrated into sports broadcasting: One company is already prototyping drones that automatically follow an athlete from a few feet away—perfect, they say, for downhill skiing. And drones are also making appearances at events smaller than the Olympics:

Delivery my parcel using a drone? Just kidding, isn’t it?

I have seen many videos, using a drone delivery parcel recently.

It stems from Amazon’s Prime Air and DHL delivery service.

Drone delivery

 

And then other start-up companies such as MikroKopter and Asctending technology released their videos with a title Christmas gifts delivery.

 

 

 

Isn’t it just for joking and nothing serious ha?

If you plan to deliver a book to a place 12Km far way, a chopper, couple of automobiles may be required. :)

It is quite difficult to see possibility in near future to do this, (especially when a drone completely disappears line-of-sight), it is good to advertise UAV, MAV, UAS whatever to public.