Autonomous Drone Flight 101

Drone flying in the sky using autonomous flight.

By Brandon Guillot, RPC, MAS

One of the most fascinating aspects of modern sUAS is the ability to conduct autonomous flights.

These flights are conducted in a way where the pilot has determined a specific course of action that would be executed by the aircraft — but is not manually providing the “stick and rudder” inputs to accomplish that objective.

Autonomous flights are extremely popular for many reasons, and they even point the way to the future. Once we see changes in the FAA regulatory environment, automatic flights will form the backbone of “Last Mile Delivery” systems using UAS to deliver goods to consumers.

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Regulatory Update: Recreational sUAS in Controlled Airspace

Recreational drone with pilot.

By Brandon Guillot, RPC, MAS

The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) issued a new directive on May 16, 2019 that directly affects all recreational  sUAS nationwide. Under this new directive, all recreational sUAS must receive authorization from the FAA prior to flying in any controlled airspace. The FAA divides the National Airspace System (NAS) into different Classes (or types) of airspace in order to prevent a “loss of separation” (or collision) between two aircraft at any given time. Under this new directive, specific authorization from the FAA must be given for Class B, C, D, and E surface areas near busy airports. Read more

Toy or Tool: How Are We Representing What We Fly?

sUAS in the air

By Brandon Guillot, RPC, MAS

A common way that I open presentations to manned pilots, airport personnel, and other decision makers is to point out that the Federal Aviation Administration has classified sUAS as “aircraft” as of 2012. While this sometimes brings out skepticism or laughs, it helps to point out that this classification allows the FAA to have control over the regulation, certification, and even protection of these aircraft.

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FAA Announces Big Change for Displaying Drone Registration Number

FAA changes drone registration marking rules

New rules regarding marking the drone registration number on your drone will become effective for all flights as of February 23, 2019.

The FAA has posted the new rule in the Federal Register which will require that the registration number for your small unmanned aircraft needs to be displayed on an outside surface of the drone rather than in an inside compartment and it must be readily visible.

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FAA Restrictions on Drone Flights over U.S. Landmarks

Drone Pilots not to fly over Statue of Liberty

If you were thinking of taking some drone footage above Hoover Dam or the Statue of Liberty, you should be aware of the drone flight restrictions that were put into effect on October 5, 2017 for 10 major U.S. landmarks.

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High Demand for Commercial Drones Predicted

infographic showing future commercial drone uses

Why You Need to Follow These “Do’s and Don’ts” of Drone Flying

Flying drones safely is more important than ever before. The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) has made tighter standards in both hobby and commercial drone flying to ensure the safety of bystanders, as well as other aircraft, buildings, and birds. Knowing the basics when it comes to flying drones saves one’s energy, money and time and protects everyone involved. Read more

The Future With Drones

futuristic drones flying over the city

First used in military applications as far back as the Second World War, drone technology has now advanced to the point where they are used as toys, as photography and surveillance tools, and yes, as commercially viable appliances.

Far cheaper to purchase and operate than manned aircraft such as gyrocopters, drones can carry a wide variety of sensors and even light cargo. Informed observers expect the drone market to reach as much as $7 billion per annum by 2020. A great deal of this expected sudden increase will be based on regulatory reform, which has not kept pace with technological advances, even lower costs for greater capabilities, and – not to be overlooked – the improvements and wider application of machine learning and data analytics.

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Michigan’s Hope College Receives Frozen Yogurt Delivery by Drone

Quadcopter delivering a package

Utilizing today’s latest drone technology, the world of frozen yogurt has forever changed now that one company was capable of delivering their sweet frozen treats to Hope College in Michigan. To say this technological feat was anything but brilliant is a complete understatement.
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Disney Uses 300 Intel Drones to Make U.S. Light Show History

The Walt Disney World resort in Florida has recently made history. They took 300 Intel Shooting Star drones and used this advanced technology to innovate the traditional light show at their resort. This technological advancement is a true achievement that will help improve the holiday season for kids of all ages this December.

The name of their latest innovation is called “Starbright Holidays, An Intel Collaboration” and this exciting drone-based light show kicked off the holiday season on November 20th with two shows; one at 7:30 PM and one at 8:30 PM. They will continue to host more shows all throughout the holidays.

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