Tag Archives: Australia

UAV180 UAS Traffic Management Concepts

Concepts for UAS traffic management (UTM) in urban areas, calls for a UTM system in Australia, Flirtey raises capital, a Great Sand Dunes National Park mapping project, and visualizing the airflow around a quadcopter.

UAS Traffic Management concepts

UAS Traffic Management (UTM) concepts, courtesy AIAA

UAV News

Deciding Rules Of The Road For Urban UAS

If large numbers of drones are ever to provide delivery services in urban areas, UAS traffic management rules need to be created to safely manage the flow. From the American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics’ 2017 AIAA SciTech Forum in Grapevine, Texas, we learn about some of the concepts that NASA’s Ames Research Center is looking at for UAS traffic management in urban areas.

There are three basic concepts:

  • Sky-lanes: Vehicles must follow the centerline of each lane, and fly in one direction.
  • Sky-tubes: Vehicles move inside each tube, and fly only in one direction.
  • Sky-corridors: Vehicles can fly in any direction, but the vehicles themselves must maintain safe separation.

Time to Build an Australian National Unmanned Traffic Management (UTM) System

The Association of Certified UAV Operators (ACUO) wants the Federal Government to “launch a program to design, develop and implement a continent-wide unmanned traffic management (UTM) system as the only viable means of achieving the safe integration of remotely piloted aircraft systems (RPAS)… into national airspace.”

ACUO and others wanted the Senate to disallow the recent CASA drone regulations, and ACUO has presented a proposal: ACUO submission to the Senate Standing Committee on Rural and Regional Affairs and Transport [PDF].

ACUO has three major concerns:

  • How comprehensive was the risk assessment and safety case used by CASA as a basis for creating the concept of “Excluded RPA?”
  • What is the likely impact of the removal of training and certification for operators of “Excluded RPAS?”
  • What is the capacity and integrity of CASA’s own mechanisms and systems for ensuring compliance with the deregulated system.

Drone delivery startup Flirtey raises $16 million to become a next-gen UPS

Flirtey wants to be the world’s premier independent drone delivery service. Now the company has raised $16 million in Series A funding. Crunchbase Pro reports that 95 drone companies raised at least $500,000 in equity funding in 2016. The average funding was $6.8 million. Total invested was $482.8 million.

UAS Colorado Joins Wohnrade Civil Engineers for Great Sand Dunes National Park Mapping Project

A Swift Trainer fixed-wing UAS from Black Swift Technologies was used to map a portion of the Great Sand Dunes National Park and Preserve in Colorado. The project used precision mapping with high-fidelity remote sensors to measure and monitor the dunes. Participating in the project were UAS Colorado (a non-profit business league), Black Swift Technologies, the National Park Service (NPS), and Wohnrade Civil Engineers, Inc. They plan to take the data they captured and compare it to airborne LiDAR data from the United States Geological Survey.

UAV Video of the Week

Watch Air Swirl Around a Quadcopter Drone’s Rotors

This visualization of the airflow around a DJI Phantom 3 demonstrates areas of low pressure, areas of high pressure, and disturbed air. To create the animation, a NASA aerospace engineer and a scientific visualization specialist ran a simulation on 1,024 cores of NASA’s Pleiades supercomputer. It took five days to compute. The results offer design implications for UAV efficiency and noise.

UAV042 It used to be UFOs, now it’s UAVs

Nighthawk IV UAS

AUVSI’s Unmanned Systems 2014 conference and trade show, a drone narrowly misses a commercial flight, and hack-proof UAS software from DARPA.

Guest: Bob Schmidt, President, UAV Propulsion Tech.

AUVSI’s Unmanned Systems 2014 conference and trade show was held in Orlando, Florida May 12-15, 2014. Bob attended and he offers his perspectives on the event. Follow Bob on Twitter as @Schmidtproducts.

The News:

Drone just missed turbo-prop over Perth military airspace

A De Havilland Dash 8-300 turbo-prop on approach to Perth Airport encountered a strobe light coming towards them. After taking evasive action, the object passed them about 20 m horizontally and 100 ft vertically. Was it a UAV at 3,800 feet?

Airplane Near-Misses: How Often Do They Happen?

Actually, quite often, according to the FAA.

DARPA unveils hack-proof drone

The Defense Advance Research Project Agency (DARPA) has a project to develop hack-proof software for aircraft navigation and control. In the High Assurance Cyber Military Systems project (HACMS), cyber experts were unable to hack into a prototype quadcopter running the software.

Videos of the Week:

David’s pick: Superyacht mast pulled, filmed by a Drone. This is Superyachting. Big boat, big mast, impressive aerial views.

Max’s pick: Basic Quadcopter Tutorial – Chapter 1. This 9-part video tutorial shows how to build a quadcopter from components. Produced by Hoverfly, who develop multi-rotor aerial systems, including a tethered quadcopter.

Listener Feedback:

Departments of Transportation, and Housing and Urban Development, and Related Agencies Appropriations Bill, 2015 [PDF] Will more money help the FAA develop UAS regulations sooner? From Bill.

How to shoot amazing video from drones. A compilation of videos shot by UAV’s. From Kevin.

Northrop Grumman to collaborate with RMIT University on UAS. Northrop Grumman and the Royal Melbourne Institute of Technology (RMIT) University plan to study airworthiness operating requirements for UAS in Australia, Focusing on larger aircraft.

Micro-Aircraft Declared Safe to Fly in U.S. Skies. Applied Research Associates, Inc. produces the Nighthawk IV UAS, launched by hand or tube with GPS and a built-in autopilot. It weighs 1.6 pounds, has a 60 minute flight time, and a range of over 10km. From Jesse. (Photo above.)

UAV041 Regulating UAS

Flying Fire Breathing Dragon

UAS regulation proposals from CASA in Australia and from a listener in the U.S., a “Ten best drones” list, NASA testing sense and avoid with a Predator, and bright job prospects for those with UAS skills.

The News:

NPRM 1309OS – Remotely Piloted Aircraft Systems
Australia’s ‘low risk’ drone strike stance could bring down airliners
Certified UAS operators in Australia hits 100

The Australian CASA released an NPRM (a Notice of Proposed Rule Making) on May 14 concerning Remotely Piloted Aircraft (or RPA) used for commercial operations. It excludes model aircraft used for recreational purposes, but it does have provisions for a “low risk” class of RPA with a gross weight of no more than 2 kilograms:

10 Best Remote Control Drones for 2014

The editors at Faveable made a list of what they believe to be the ten best consumer drones available today.

NASA Wants To Prove Predator Drones Can Play Nice With Airliners

NASA plans to fly an MQ-9 Predator B and two manned manned aircraft in the same airspace. The idea is to test sense and avoid algorithms under real world conditions.

Graduates with drone skills are going to be in demand soon

If you can design, build, or operate drones, you might have a bright future ahead of you. In a 2013 report, the Association for Unmanned Vehicle Systems International says we could see 70,000 new jobs in the U.S. within three years, and 100,000 new jobs by the year 2025.

Video of the Week:

Drone HDR with HDRinstant

Use stacking and morphing technology to create HDR images from your drone videos.

Listener Feedback:

Roy submits two articles for consideration:

Question: What Should the FAA Do About Small UAS? – General Aviation needs to participate in the conversation.

UAVs: Chafing (Rightfully) Against Regulation – The UAV industry and enthusiasts are different than “legacy” aviation. They are historically unrestrained by regulations, and live in a world of fast technology change. The FAA is talking like they are in charge, but they aren’t.

Roy also offers the things he thinks the FAA should be looking at when classifying UAS: weight, speed, and type of control. Type of control defined as:

    • Line of sight and the pilot has to watch it.
    • Point of view and the pilot flies it by watching a video feed from the drone.
    • Completely autonomous, so no pilot is required.

UAV011 The You In UAV Digest

DJI FlameWheel550

This Episode:

The “drone” word, a Cathedral view by quadcopter, Australia’s CASA regs on UAS, Trappy in trouble, a UAV Challenge, a must-see video of autonomous flying, and bad uses of UAVs, all from the listener mailbag.

The News:

We Are Not Drones Pilots: sensor operators put human element in RPA operations

Capt. Blain, a 29th Attack Squadron MQ-9 Reaper instructor pilot assigned to Holloman Air Force Base, New Mexico, cringes at the term “drone” because it implies no human piloting. He prefers “remotely piloted” because there is a pilot, a sensor operator, tactical intelligence, and a ground commander involved.

Listener Mail:

Parker recorded Highland Cathedral (Performed and filmed at Fish Church, Stamford Ct.) with his UAS hexacopter.

Ben Jones notes that CASA in Australia is being proactive with UAS and sends some CASA links:

  • Unmanned aircraft systems – You are a UAS operator if you conduct air work – this includes commercial tasks (hire and reward), demonstrations, training, R&D, flying for company internal purposes, etc.

On our Facebook page, Ben posted a link to “Trappy versus the FAA (an opinion-piece rant)” on YouTube. This was recorded by XJet. “Trappy” is Raphael Pirker from Team Blacksheep who does First Person Video (FPV). Rafael received a $10,000 fine from the FAA for flying his drone for money “in a careless or reckless manner,” reportedly close to civilians, structures, even through a tunnel with moving cars.

Listener Ben is also thinking about entering the UAV Challenge, specifically the Search and Rescue contest, which is designed “to demonstrate the utility of Unmanned Airborne Vehicles (UAVs) for civilian applications. The competitors will be required to develop a UAV that could save lives by quickly and cost effectively delivering medical supplies to critically ill patients in the Australian Outback.”

Steve in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia is building a quad copter to be equipped with a Gopro camera. He intends to start off flying it RC, but he’s already thinking about how to make it fly autonomously. Steve sends a link to an amazing TED talk and demonstration, The astounding athletic power of quadcopters by roboticist Raffaello D’Andrea.

Micah asks, “how long before UAS technology is used in an attack against the USA?” Cat notes that the positive possibilities of UAV’s always push hard against concerns of misuse and loss of privacy.

Tony sent a link to Mystery drone collides with Sydney Harbour Bridge which reports that a quadcopter crashed into the Bridge and triggered a terrorism alert.

 

 

UAV009 It’s Raining Drones

Hermes 450

Hermes 450

This Episode:

A Manhattan man almost struck by Quadcopter, Conoco Phillips broken Eagle, Israeli Hermes drone crashes, wine and drones don’t mix or do they?, “game on” for a wildlife conservation challenge, the US decides no drones in Iraq but OK in Japan, and the Mounties start training the Aussies on UAS usage.

The News:

Drone reportedly plummets dozens of stories and crash lands on busy Manhattan streets

The subtitle is “Local cops didn’t follow up but the pilot likely violated federal regulations.” A small drone came down in the City, missing the pedestrians but landing close to one. He took the SD card, gave it to a local network station, and contacted the police. They told him no law had been broken.

Giant Leap Falls Short? ConocoPhillips ScanEagle crashes

One of the first two commercial sUAS permits granted by the FAA, has resulted in a crash. The second ConocoPhillips Scan Eagle flight has resulted in a crash, reportedly due to an engine failure.

IAF drone plunges into the sea

Israeli Defense force Hermes 450 Falls out of the sky. The early assessment is engine failure. The MALE drone has a history of Engine failures and is the third one lost in over two years. Made by Elbit Systems, the Hermes is powered by a UAV Engines Limited Wankel engine.

Drones + Wine: how UAVs can help farmers harvest grapes

3D Robotics brought autonomous, fixed-wing planes and multi-rotors with a point-and-shoot camera mounted inside to a family-owned vineyard. Images were taken automatically based on GPS location, and stitched together, generating a 3D model.

Wildlife Conservation unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) Challenge

Kashmir RoboticsKashmir-Robotics is hosting the Wildlife Conservation unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) Challenge with $65,000 in cash prizes. The wcUAVc aims to foster “innovation and invention in the design, fabrication, and utilization of unmanned aircraft to assist with counter poaching and illicit wildlife trafficking.”

U.S. Rules Out a New Drone War in Iraq

In a continuing effort to counter opposing forces, the Iraqi government welcomes lethal drone strikes, but U.S. Government policy is shifting.

Agreement will allow U.S. to fly long-range surveillance drones from base in Japan

The U.S. and Japan have signed an agreement to allow operating the Global Hawk surveillance drones from Japanese bases. Two or three Global Hawks are to fly in the Spring of 2014 “near North Korea” and complement spy satellites.

RCMP shares secrets with Aussies

The Queensland, Australia police have visited the Saskatchewan Royal Canadian Mounted Police as part of a worldwide Winston Churchill Fellowship study on the use of UAVs in policing. After visiting many countries, the Aussie cop was impressed by Canadian use of UAVs.