Wednesday, November 30, 2016

The government uses the hammer to stop drone flights at oil pipeling protest

"On October 23, the Morton County Sheriff’s Department announced it had shot down a drone after it had approached a police helicopter 'in a threatening manner.' Soon after, it petitioned the FAA for the TFR, which extends until at least Friday (in the past, TFRs have been immediately renewed after they expire). 

The TFR says 'no pilots may operate an aircraft in the areas covered by this Notice to Airmen,' however it carves out an exception for 'response aircraft in support of law enforcement aircraft,' meaning that police aircraft continue to monitor the protesters’ camps.
'In essence, a ‘giant tarp’ has been laid over the site, allowing law enforcement to act with impunity and without any witnesses,' Peter Sachs, a drone law attorney in Connecticut, wrote on his blog earlier this week.
Gutterman of Syracuse University told me the TFR has 'the effect of prior restraint,' an established First Amendment violation in which the government places a restriction on expression before it can take place."

I have seen some of their drone footage and in my opinion they blatantly and consistently violate  FAA rules about flying over people.  They fly, to my mind, in a threatening manner close to the police.  I think the police had every right to shoot at the quadcopter in the video I've seen. 

Monday, November 28, 2016

UK issues drone code

"To make things a little easier for pilots to remember, the watchdog has come up with a mnemonic aid as follows:
  • Don't fly near airports or airfields
  • Remember to stay below 400ft (120m) and at least 150ft (50m) away from buildings and people
  • Observe your drone at all times
  • Never fly near aircraft
  • Enjoy responsibly
While you can't help but feel the CAA stopped trying by the time it got to the letter "O," there's no doubt that some drone pilots could use some common sense.
Earlier this month it emerged that airline pilots reported four near misses with drones in a month, including one flying near London's Shard and another at Liverpool airport"

I hope people get the message.

Thursday, November 24, 2016

Pipeline protester's drone gets shot down

I would say this guy is ignoring the FAA rules about flying over private property. But oh well. I just hope he knows the FAA could come after him.

quadcopter takes its orders, does the work, and comes back all by itself

"AeroVironment is emphasizing the drone’s ease of use: the operator plans a mission withthe tablet by tracing his finger over a map. The system guides the operator through a simple pre-flight check. The operator then presses the “fly” button, and the drone autonomously takes off, flies the mission and lands.
The Quantix carries color and multispectral sensors. AeroVironment says the DSS uses proprietary algorithms to produce high-resolution datasets and analyses of crops, bridges, roads, railways, pipelines and other assets."

so now you don't even need to know how to fly.

Monday, November 14, 2016

Canadian airliner swerves to avoid drone; injuries

"A Canadian airliner with 54 passengers on board had to swerve to avoid a suspected drone near Toronto early on Monday, slightly injuring two cabin crew, in the most serious case of its kind in Canada, officials said.
The Porter Airlines Bombardier Q400 twin-prop plane, which took off from Ottawa, was at 9,000ft (2,750 meters), descending into the city’s Billy Bishop waterfront airport, when the pilots saw an unmanned aerial vehicle.
'Two crew members performed an evasive maneuver to avoid the unidentified object,'
said Genevieve Corbin, a spokeswoman for the Transportation Safety Board of Canada (TSB). Corbin said the object was most likely a drone."

It's very simple, follow the rules!  Stay away from airports!  Duh!

Saturday, November 12, 2016

500-drone swarm by Intel

This show that you can use drone swarms for wonderful things. Let's keep it that way.

Wednesday, November 9, 2016

Gopro's Karma recalled already

"GoPro estimates that 2,500 Karma drones have been sold so far, and all of them are subject to this recall. The company decided to issue the recall because a small number of drones reportedly "lost power during operation" for unknown reasons. GoPro did state that no injuries or property damage have been reported as a result of this issue, but it's unknown exactly how many of the 2,500 drones have been affected by this problem."

well that escalated quickly.  I hope it's a quick fix and I'm glad I haven't decided which quadcopter to buy yet.

Wednesday, November 2, 2016

Rescue drones in Tokyo

"Firefighters tested the small unmanned aircraft at an indoor swimming pool on Wednesday. The exercise envisioned a person who had been swept downstream in a river clogged with debris and fallen trees.

The firefighters maneuvered a drone with a camera attached and located the victim using a heat detector. They then dropped a small buoy to rescue the person.

The Tokyo Fire Department currently uses helicopters for rescue operations. It is studying the use of drones at sites that present risks of secondary disasters."