Crowded Skies are Coming

Crowded Skies are Coming

By Tyler Short

Google recently completed a series of tests related to multiple unmanned aircraft systems operating in the same airspace. The tests were carried out by Google and organized by the FAA and NASA. With an eye towards creating a world where delivery by unmanned aircraft systems is a reality, Google has created a traffic management platform that has the capabilities of automatically plotting the paths of multiple unmanned aircraft systems and then updating the paths while in mid-flight. This platform may be the key to operating several unmanned aircraft systems in the same area.

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Autonomous Delivery Robots Rolled Out in Virginia

Autonomous Delivery Robots Rolled Out in Virginia

By D. Rockwell Bower

Effective July 1, 2017, Virginia will become the first state to allow robots to deliver packages via ground delivery, utilizing sidewalks and crosswalks. 

As safety and regulatory concerns have prolonged the introduction of drone delivery services from Amazon and Google, ground-delivery robotics companies have worked with legislators in several states to demonstrate the safety and efficiency of ground-based autonomous delivery robots. The new legislation allows robots to roam autonomously, so long as they are supervised by the delivery company from a remote monitoring system and do not exceed 10 miles per hour or 50 pounds. Virginia’s new law may be amended by local municipalities to regulate how robots will operate locally, including speed limits and potentially prohibiting robots entirely. 

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UPS Autonomously Delivers Package During Recent Test

UPS Autonomously Delivers Package During Recent Test

By: John R. Bednarz

On Monday, February 20, 2017, UPS tested the use of an unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) to successfully complete a residential package delivery in Lithia, Florida, near Tampa. The UAV was launched from a retractable portion of the roof of a UPS delivery vehicle. The UAV autonomously delivered the package to a home while the UPS delivery vehicle continued along a delivery route to make a separate delivery. The UAV returned to the vehicle after making its delivery and docked within the retractable portion of the roof. 

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Dubai Announces Single-Passenger UAS Taxi Service

Dubai Announces Single-Passenger UAS Taxi Service

By: Spencer R. Wood

Dubai announced this week that an autonomous unmanned aircraft system (UAS) would begin providing single-passenger taxi service in that city as early as July. The UAS that is expected to launch this new era of driverless air travel is manufactured in China, and already has flown test runs in Dubai skies. 

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