A UAS Test Site receives an FAA Certificate of Authorization, Spain bans commercial drone use, a drone tracker kit, drones for burglers, a survey says Americans favor targeting terrorists with drones, and an update on the FAA v. Pirker appeal.
On April 21, the FAA announced that the UAS Test Site operated by the North Dakota Department of Commerce is operational. A Certificate of Waiver or Authorization (COA) was granted to the Northern Plains Unmanned Aircraft Systems Test Site to begin using a Draganflyer X4ES.
The AESA, Spain’s State Agency for Aerial Security, has banned commercial drone use anywhere in the country. The Agency fears “misunderstandings and possible incidents” with these new UAVs. If that’s not bad enough, what does this mean for two new projects: the Atlas Experimental Flight Centre for testing UAS and the aerodrome project in Doñana National Park?
Sagetech Corporation designs and manufacturers electronic subsystems for the unmanned and manned aerial vehicles. Their ADS-B Tracker Kit is a turnkey solution that tracks drones on iPads. For that price, you get a 150 gram Sagetech XPG-TR micro transponder for the drone, a Clarity ADS-B receiver, and an iPad.
If you obtain a relatively inexpensive multi-copter and attach an infrared camera, you can fly around and detect sources of relative heat. Also, someone growing a large number of marijuana plants in an indoor farm is going to be using a lot of grow lights. Put the two together and you have a creative use for drones. Good guys can catch the pot growers, Bad guys know where they can steal a lot of weed.
A recent Gallup Poll asked about 500 adult Americans “Do you think the U.S. government should or should not use drones to — ?” 65% said yes to launching airstrikes in other countries against suspected terrorists.
Much of this article repeats what we said last episode about FAA v. Pirker, but this was written by John Goglia, a former Board member. At issue is whether or not the small UAS is an aircraft as defined by the FARs, and thus subject Pirker to it’s limitations on careless or reckless operation of an aircraft. After almost ten years on the NTSB, Goglia notes that most (not all) cases go in favor of the FAA. But here he says, “This case appears to me to be one that defies logic.”
Video of the Week:
Matternet, A Ted Talk video about autonomous electric aerial vehicles proposed for a transportation network that brings items (“matter”) to areas of the world without year-round ground transportation roads. Via Michael.
A Drone Perspective, a map of Small Unmanned Aircraft System (sUAS) videos, via Chris.