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 Post subject: FAA cautiously agrees to some use of civilian drones
PostPosted: Fri Nov 08, 2013 12:34 pm 
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The Federal Aviation Administration weighed in on the increasing civilian use of autonomous drones on Thursday. The government agency released a report outlining a roadmap for certain cases in which unmanned drones could be permissible.

In the report (pdf), with the lengthy title "Integration of Civil Unmanned Aircraft Systems (UAS) in the National Airspace System Roadmap," the FAA said that autonomous drones are already being used in disaster response, cargo transport, aerial mapping, and commercial photography. While drones are already buzzing around, the FAA is cautious with allowing wholesale use of the flying machines.

Unmanned drones bring up the sticky issue of privacy. These self-flying vehicles can swoop over vast areas gathering information on unsuspecting people. Even Google's executive chairman has cautioned legalizing drone use, saying they could infringe on people's privacy and that they should be regulated.

However, drones can also be very useful for civilians. For instance, farmers can use them to monitor their crops, hunters could use them to stake out deer, and earth scientists could use them for gathering data and research.

In its report, which was created by orders of Congress, the FAA said it would accept some agricultural drones if a person monitors the flying object from the ground.

For now, all unmanned drones bigger than a small shoebox sized apparatus are still prohibited. For those smaller drones that are allowed -- they must stay within a person's view. The FAA wrote that it will prioritize research on the use of self-flying vehicles. Additionally, it will launch six drone test sites by the end of this year.

These test sites are "not intended to predetermine the long-term policy and regulatory framework under which UAS would operate," the FAA wrote. But they will "help inform the dialogue."

Most likely, the government won't take action on legalizing or prohibiting drones further until 2016.

http://news.cnet.com/8301-11386_3-57611 ... an-drones/


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 Post subject: Re: FAA cautiously agrees to some use of civilian drones
PostPosted: Fri Nov 08, 2013 3:07 pm 
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Joined: Fri Jul 15, 2005 2:34 pm
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Location: Within 60 Miles of the Northern Anthracite Field
Interesting article. While the machines we are using are not autonomous they have the capability to be. You can write a flight path on google earth, upload it and send it on its way. We have not and do not intend to use them that way but its neat they have the capability to do so. They are too fun to fly using first person view glasses to send them off on their own mission. And a bit too expensive if there's a glitch and they don't come home :wink:

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 Post subject: Re: FAA cautiously agrees to some use of civilian drones
PostPosted: Fri Nov 08, 2013 3:21 pm 
When I read this, I thought to myself "Chris will like this article."


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 Post subject: Re: FAA cautiously agrees to some use of civilian drones
PostPosted: Wed Nov 13, 2013 1:28 am 
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I guess what is neat about the ability to go autonomous is for when you have a specific video mapping mission and the drone may be out of radio range. Like if you wanted to map an area of a coal field and you may not have line of site access for the entire area.

I'm sure it is certainly more fun to fly, but I can imagine times where that might not be possible.

Miner Greg


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 Post subject: Re: FAA cautiously agrees to some use of civilian drones
PostPosted: Wed Nov 13, 2013 3:54 am 
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Location: New Zealand
Similar news down here too.

http://www.stuff.co.nz/environment/8931 ... -pollution


Chris
in New Zealand

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 Post subject: Re: FAA cautiously agrees to some use of civilian drones
PostPosted: Wed Nov 13, 2013 9:15 am 
Hey, US Chris, can you set your drone to fly autonomously?


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 Post subject: Re: FAA cautiously agrees to some use of civilian drones
PostPosted: Wed Nov 13, 2013 1:41 pm 
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Chris wrote:
While the machines we are using are not autonomous they have the capability to be. You can write a flight path on google earth, upload it and send it on its way.

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 Post subject: Re: FAA cautiously agrees to some use of civilian drones
PostPosted: Wed Nov 13, 2013 10:26 pm 
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As Doug pointed out I already answered that ;) while they can, we find it more fun to actually fly them. And there is a very large shade of gray with the legalities of flying automosouly that I don't wish to explore. Plus like I stated above, some of the machines we fly are worth a price with many, many zeros in front of the decimal point and it has a much better chance of coming home if you actually fly it there......

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 Post subject: Re: FAA cautiously agrees to some use of civilian drones
PostPosted: Thu Nov 14, 2013 12:05 am 
*grins sheepishly* Yeah, I forgot that you had said that already.


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