US government approves drone-testing projects

10 May 2018

As part of the Unmanned Aircraft Systems Integration Pilot Program launched by the US administration last year, the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) gave the green light to 10 drone-testing projects. Current US regulation prohibits the flying of commercial drones over people and out of the line of sight, but the ten approved projects will be able to operate outside these regulations. The overall aim of the pilot programme is to put commercial drones to test and use the findings to help US authorities revise current regulations to make them suitable to govern the use of drones for commercial purposes. Some of the ten projects, approved from a total of 149 applications, include the use of drones by Apple to capture images of North Carolina, in partnership with the state's Department of Transportation; startup Flirtey delivering medical supplies; and FedEx working with local airport authorities to use drones to inspect aircrafts and deliver parcels.

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The Internet of Things (IoT) includes a wide range of Internet-connected devices, from highly digitalised cars, home appliances (e.g. fridges), and smart watches, to digitalised clothes that can monitor health. IoT devices are often connected in wide-systems, typically described as 'smart houses' or 'smart cities'.

Historically, telecommunications, broadcasting, and other related areas were separate industry segments; they used different technologies and were governed by different regulations.


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