DJI has released a new report that highlights how drone technology is being used in critical public safety missions. "At least 65 people have been rescued by drones in the last year, according to a new report issued Monday by DJI, the world’s leader in civilian drones and aerial imaging technology. The report gathers accounts from news outlets and public safety agencies around the world, and includes 27 separate incidents on five continents."
Today, the Alliance for Drone Innovation (ADI) Executive Director Jenny Rosenberg issued the following statement on H.R. 4, the FAA Reauthorization Act of 2018, after the House of Representatives approved the bill on Friday, April 27, by a vote of 398-13.
“With the passage of H.R. 4, the House of Representatives is standing firmly behind innovation in aviation and the future of unmanned flight. We are grateful to Chairman Shuster and Reps. Sanford and Davis for shepherding language that promotes aviation safety among recreational drone users while allowing for continued growth in this exciting sector. We look forward to working with leaders of both parties in the Senate to ensure adoption of this important provision.”
The Press of Atlantic City highlights the benefits of drone education classes on local entrepreneurs. "Adam Greco, who teaches drone classes at Atlantic Cape, and Rowan and Stockton universities, said just as the automobile changed the way the world moved, drones are changing the way just about any industry operates. With that change comes hesitance, but also innovation, he said. 'They are doing things that humans used to do safer, cheaper and quicker,” said Greco. “It’s very hard to keep up with the UAS world.' Regulations on the drone industry are still being tweaked, and so is the technology, he said. Greco said he reads every day about drones to keep ahead of the changes — and for his students’ benefit, too. He said many of his students have gone on to start their own drone-related businesses or apply them to their profession."
CBS News highlights the use of drone technology at the United Nation's World Food Program. "Enrica Porcari, head of WFP's Technology Division told CBS News that the use of drones in humanitarian responses is groundbreaking because 'it could reduce humanitarian response time from days to hours to even minutes and make delivery of assistance more efficient, accurate and cost-effective.' 'Drones can allow humanitarian agencies to mitigate risks before they turn to disasters,'Porcari said. The example she gave was Mozambique, where the WFP-supplied drones were able to send data to analyze flood-prone areas and allowed the government's disaster management agency to move people in areas that will be affected by the floods before it actually reached them, greatly reducing potential loss of life."
In a Medium post, Jon Hegranes breaks down the potential of Low Altitude Authorization and Notification Capability (LAANC). "LAANC was developed over the last year in a collaboration with government and private industry to open the national airspace to drone operators, replacing a ~90-day manual process to receive authorization to fly in controlled airspace, down to seconds via an API. This is a critical step in evolving the airspace and automating processes, without sacrificing safety for manned or unammned flights. What LAANC really means for commercial drone operators is a quick and unambiguous method to request flight authorizations in controlled airspace. The FAA has essentially replaced a blackbox method that took months to a precise method that happens immediately. For commercial pilots, the airspace will start to look a lot different."
Unmanned Aerial Online highlights the UPS Foundation's work in expanding the use of drone technology in Rwanda. "The expanded support comes as The UPS Foundation awards 2018 grants and in-kind support totaling more than $16 million to nonprofit, non-governmental organizations and United Nations agencies for humanitarian relief, community resilience and safety programs worldwide. The global partnership with Zipline and Gavi, which formed in May 2016 and formally launched the first drone deliveries in October 2016, has resulted in more than 4,000 drone deliveries expediting over 7,000 units of blood to remote hospitals across Rwanda. The drone delivery network has proven so successful that in 2018, it’s being expanded across all of Rwanda, says The UPS Foundation."
The Abilene Reporter News highlights drone innovation in agriculture research in Texas. "The flights visually measure how fast the stand established in the fall, how well it did when the cold temperatures hit and the spring green-up. To walk the dryland field takes three to four hours of walking and writing notes in the notebook, Rudd said. With the drone, it takes 10-15 minutes.'It’s a big change from having to walk the field, although we are still doing that now to ground-truth and make sure everything the drones are recording is correct,' he said. 'But I’m gaining more confidence in the drone information, and I think it’s going to give us efficiency and a lot more data to make our selections. We can see plant development through the year and adjust what groups of material we are going to focus on at harvest.'"
In a Forbes post, aeronautics and technology professor John Goglia stresses that more education of hobby flyers is needed rather than implementing more excessive drone regulations. "Most importantly though, more education of hobby flyers is needed, especially new flyers. Leaders of commercial drone companies would do well to focus on how to ensure new flyers are aware of existing drone rules and safe flying practices, not only to protect the safety of the aviation system but to encourage young people into the aviation industry. Hobby flying for students remains a gateway to careers in aviation. Surely it will be a gateway to the commercial drone industry. Those of us who care about the future of aviation, need to make sure that model aircraft flying - whether in traditional model aircraft or drones - remains an attractive pursuit."
A slate of the leading drone and aviation industry media outlets — including The Drive, Unmanned Aerial Online, DRONELIFE, UASWeekly.com, UAS Magazine, and UAV Expert News — reported on last week’s launch of the Alliance for Drone Innovation (ADI), a new policy-oriented coalition of manufacturers, suppliers, and software developers of personal and professional drones. The wide-ranging coverage reflects the growing interest and support among stakeholders and consumers for increased safety, innovation, and expansion of the drone economy. “We look forward to working with Congress, the administration, and other stakeholders on policies that promote innovation and allow the drone market to flourish in a responsible and safe manner,” said Executive Director Jenny Rosenberg in launching the Alliance.
The Houston Chronicle provides us with a never-before-seen view inside the famed "Astrodome." "We usually never pass up an opportunity to photograph the inside of the Astrodome. It's probably the most-photographed building in the city. But shoot it enough times and things will start to look the same. You've seen one photo looking straight up at the Dome's roof, you've probably seen them all. On Monday, a domecoming party will celebrate the historical landmark's 53rd anniversary and its history. Ahead of Monday's event, we decided to do something different. The result is the video you see here from photographer and drone operator Mark Mulligan, multimedia director Scott Kingsley, reporter Mike Ward, who narrates the video, and myself."