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Drone Production and Use Commercial and Civilian

Drone Production and Use Commercial and Civilian

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Drone Production and Use Commercial and Civilian

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  1. Drone Production and UseCommercial and Civilian Maxine Major October 1, 2013

  2. Overview • Semantics & Terminology • FAA Perspective • Commercial Drone Uses • Recreational Uses • Concerns • Immediate Future of UAVs

  3. Semantics Federal Aviation Administration (FAA)Unmanned Aircraft System (UAS) Questions and Answers

  4. FAA • • UASs may be flown for business purposes such as research and development. • Civil aircraft: Special Airworthiness Certificates - Experimental Category (SAC-EC) • Public aircraft: Certificates of Waiver or Authorization (COA) “Currently, there are no means to obtain an authorization for commercial UAS operations in the NAS. However, manufacturers may apply for an experimental certificate for the purposes of R&D, market survey and crew training.”

  5. FAA • 2010 FAA UAS market growth forecasts “assumed that: • Commercial activities would not begin until 2018 • No significant technological or extraordinary demand would accelerate the introduction of UAS’s • Costs of UAS systems would decline as the technology matures and as the scale of operations increases.” • Forecast report also predicted • 15,000 units by 2020 • 30,000 units by 2030

  6. FAA • 2013 FAA Aerospace Forecast • “Unmanned Aircraft Systems are currently the most dynamic growth sector within the aviation industry.” • “The largest near-term growth in civil/commercial unmanned operations will be in the area of Small Unmanned Aircraft Systems (sUAS).” • Currently developing plans to integrate civil UAS into the National Airspace System (NAS) • 7,500 commercial sUAS in 5 years (2018)

  7. FAA Aerospace Forecast

  8. Commercially Approved Drones • Only two drones have gained commercial approval from the FAA to date. • Insitu’sScanEagle • In use by an energy company in Alaska to monitor ice and whales during petroleum exploration. • AeroVironment’s Puma • Used by NOAA at Florida Keys National Marine Sanctuary

  9. ScanEagle • Insitu Scan Eagle 200 • Mark 4 Launcher, pneumatic • Flight time: 24+ hours • Speed: 41.2 m/s • 10-foot wingspan and can stay airborne for more than 24 hours before refueling • Control can be passed off to subsequent operators.

  10. Puma • AeroVironment’s Puma • Hand launched. • Waterproof • Can land in water or on dry ground • Range: 15 km • Flight time: 2 hours • Electro optical (EO) or infrared (IR) cameras

  11. Commercial Uses • Filmmaking • Emergency services: fires, floods, and other natural disasters, as well as search and rescue. • Advertising / real estate • Monitoring oil & gas pipelines • Farming: fertilizer, pesticides, seeding. • Brazil: helicopter UAVs carrying 12-megapixel cameras survey soybean and sugar cane. • France: drones help trains by inspecting rails for dents.

  12. Commercial Uses • In Dongguang, China, parcel delivery service SF Express used a drone to deliver packages. • Test run only. • Not illegal. • Pedestrian fears that drone would drop heavy items alerted authorities to haltthe trial run.

  13. Commercial Uses • Yamaha RMAX • RC helicopter for spraying crops • In use in Australia, New Zealand, and Japan • GPS • Six frequencies to control multiple helicopters • Requires UAVpilot certification

  14. Commercial Uses • Farmer Robert Blair (Kendrick, ID) • Supposedly first farmer to use a UAV to assist with farming operations (2006). • Homemade drone using an RC kit and a GoPro “Following the FAA rules that cover commercial flights I would have to:1) Have a pilot’s license with instrument rating,  2) Pass a flight physical, and 3) be in a full sized aircraft following the UAV. (Jan 2011)

  15. Commercial Uses • Volcano monitoring • NASA sent Dragon Eye UAVs into Turrialba Volcano’s volcanic plume to study the chemical composition. (Costa Rica) • Kite-borne GoPros monitor the Soufrière Hills volcano on Montserrat Island. (Caribbean) • Quadcopter monitors Tungurahua volcano in Ecuador left: Turrialba right: Montserrat

  16. Commercial Uses • Whale Watching • NOAA's Southwest Fisheries Science Center uses drones to help study sperm whales. • Difficult to use a boat or airplane. Airplanes are expensive and both boats and airplanes alter whale behaviors. • Used to count whale populations and also identify if whales are sick, pregnant, injured, etc. • NOAA is involved in developing drones to survive “unscheduled floatation tests”.

  17. Commercial Uses • “Dehogaflier” to hunt feral hogs in Louisiana. • $10,000, infrared camera attached to RC plane. • Hunting at night. Drone uses infrared camera to find pig. Hunter uses night vision scope to kill the pig. • Bonus: Cheaper than hunting pigs from a helicopter. ($1000/hr)(

  18. Commercial Uses • Matternet • “We are creating the next paradigm for transportation using networks of small unmanned flying vehicles.” • Purpose: deliver needed supplies to remote areas • 3rd world villages inaccessible due to flood or other disaster • Octocopter drones already used to deliver medicine to Haiti

  19. Potential Commercial Uses • Domino’s Pizza’s “Domicopter” • Likely a publicity stunt… for now • TacoCopter • Hoax. But it has potential.

  20. Recreational Uses • Extreme sports • Surfing • Base Jumping • Team Black Sheep (TBS) is a commercial company which markets to this purpose. • Exploration (places hard to get to) • Costa Concordia

  21. PETA • People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) • Shopping for drones to monitor illegal activities: • Drinking while in possession of a firearm • “Maiming animals” • Using “hunting tricks” such as spotlights and lures • Considering Aerobot’sCinestarOctocopter($9,950) "The talk is usually about drones being used as killing machines, but PETA drones will be used to save lives… Slob hunters may need to rethink the idea that they can get away with murder, alone out there in the woods with no one watching.“ - PETA President Ingrid E. Newkirk

  22. Good Citizen Controversy • A hobbyist using a homemade UAV discovered the Colombia Meat Packing Plant (Dallas) was dumping its waste into the creek nearby. • UAV was operating within limits (below 400 ft and within line-of-sight) • Still raised the concern, thatonce data captured from a civilian’s UAV can get involved in prosecution,it becomes “surveillance.”

  23. Civilian Concerns • Surveying your own property could still be considered intruding on neighbors’ privacy. • Height of airspace over one’s own property is not clearly defined.

  24. Civilian Concerns • Drone hunting licenses • Deer Trail, CO proposed ordinance to permitting drones within city limits to be shot down. • Drone hunting licenses proposed. As of Sept 4, 983 checks ($19,006) from all over the U.S. were sent in to purchase a license. • Town residents will vote Oct 8 on the ordinance.

  25. Other Issues • UAV Integration • No system in place to mitigate possible collision with other UAVs/UASs. • According to the FAA, a separate airspace for drones “would be counter to the idea of integrating unmanned aircraft into the NAS because it would be segregating, not integrating.”

  26. Test Sites for Drones • 6 UAS test sites to be selected • All applicants are public companies, but names of applicants withheld during decision process. • Final decision Dec 2013 • Test site must be operational within sixmonths of approval. (image:

  27. Applicants for Drone Test Sites • Alabama & Tennessee (joint application) • ISR Group headquarters. Already performing drone research over 10 sq mi. facility. • University of Alabama Representing over 160 companies and universities. • Colorado • Up to 14 different sites proposed. • Mississippi, Georgia, Florida, Ohio, Indiana, Utah, Maryland, and many others.

  28. Applicants for Drone Test Sites • North Dakota aiming to be drone capital • First “unmanned aviation” program at University of North Dakota • Applied to be a drone test site • $2 Billion surplus to invest in drone R&D

  29. Idaho and Drones • Idaho has also applied to host one of the six approved drone testing sites. • Idaho National Laboratory (INL) has 900 square miles to offer. • Blair Farms is also a business partner in the Idaho UAS team.


  31. References