The third FAA test site goes live, UAV’s to compete at Reno Air Races, drones spying at the World Cup, watching swim competition through the eyes of a quadcopter, hockey fans celebrate their victory by smashing a quadcopter, TV coverage of American football by drone, and mixing manned and unmanned flights in Japan.
UAS test site number three of six is now operational. The FAA granted the State of Nevada team a Certificate of Waiver or Authorization (COA) to operate an Insitu ScanEagle at the Department of Energy airport at Desert Rock.
The airport is closed to the public, the ScanEagle will not fly above 3,000 feet, and the COA is good for two years. The research topics are UAS standards and operations, operator standards, and certification requirements. They’ll also look at how civil UAS will integrate with NextGen.
The Reno Air Racing Association is planning to make some changes for the 2014 National Championship Air Races, including a competition between drones. They also intend to transmit live race coverage to the jumbotron from a drone.
The World Cup draws out the sporting passion in many people, so it’s no surprise that a drone flying over the French team practice created a furor.
Other Academy projects include land survey projects, mapping hard to reach parts of the island, virtual reality tours, and inspecting wind power and solar panels. Many of the students are employed by local farmers to have the drones inspect their land.
As L.A. Kings fans celebrated the team’s Stanley Cup win, they observed a camera-equipped UAV overhead. The frenzied hockey fans threw trash at the copter, brought it down, and wrecked it.
An unnamed source says that the National Football League is making plans to use UAVs for the Inside Training Camp series on the NFL Network. They intend to use “hovercraft” to film practice.
For the first time, a UAV has flown from an airfield that supports both military and civilian operations. The Misawa Air Base in Japan is home to the U.S. Army, Navy, and Air Force, as well as the Japan Self-Defense Forces.
The partnership between the U.S. military and Japan should provide experience operating manned and unmanned aircraft together with very different mission profiles.
Video of the Week
A former Israeli Air Force pilot has developed a kit that you connect to a paper airplane and control with a smartphone app. The “PowerUp 3.0 Smartphone Controlled Paper Airplane” was a Kickstarter project that raised $1.2 million (they were only looking for $50,000). The kit should be available at retail in August.
AOPA: Unmanned Aircraft and the National Airspace System is an interactive online course from the Air Safety Institute, with support from the Department of Defense.