Sites Named for Test Program For Unmanned Aircraft

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It will also look at package delivery applications.

North Dakota brought together state, local, and tribal governments to establish a blueprint for UAS integration that will be used across the nation.

A who's who of technology and aviation companies won USA approval to push the edge of the envelope in drone flights, from testing people's tolerance for delivery devices hovering over their rooftops to ensuring farmers' drones won't hit crop dusters.

The Memphis-Shelby County Airport Authority, in partnership with FedEx and others, was announced Wednesday as one of 10 federal partners in a Trump administration push to advance America's use of unmanned aircraft systems.

The 10 sites the U.S. Department of Transportation announced Wednesday include projects ranging from monitoring crops and oil pipelines in North Dakota to applying mosquito-killing treatments in Florida. As of May 4, there were 1.1 million registered drones in the US and more than 90,000 registered drone operators, she said.

The public-private initiative has been strongly backed by the White House as a way to accelerate the approval of operations that now require special authorizations.

The FAA said the "Unmanned Aircraft System Integration Pilot Program" will tackle the most significant challenges to integrating drones into the national airspace while reducing risks to public safety and security.

The tests will have FedEx using drones to inspect aircraft and deliver parts at Memphis International Airport. They will also deliver parts and provide emergency response.

According to Reuters, Amazon applied to deliver goods by drone to shoppers in NY but was rejected.

Uber is working on air-taxi technology and will deliver food by drone in San Diego, California. This could be a precursor to the company's recently announced plan to develop flying taxis. "I think so. It will work, and it will happen, and it's gonna be a lot of fun".

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The airport will use drones for perimeter security and to detect foreign objects and debris on runways.

Drone tracking service AirMap, which acts as an air traffic controller for the drone industry, is a partner in six of the winning programs. U.S. DOT General Counsel Steven Bradbury said the new program is "building off those test sites". So far, regulations don't permit flights over people or over long distances, and the agency has been cautious about approving waivers to allow such operations.

The program will also study the integration of drones into existing airspace operations, including counter-UAS capabilities, data exchanges between drones and other hardware and UAS traffic management.

There isn't any drone delivery in the USA yet, but Alphabet has been testing delivering packages to people's backyards in Australia.

Deploying defibrillators can increase the cardiac arrest survival rate from just 10 percent today, to approximately 47 percent, the company said.

Drones may soon be able to fly at night, among other benefits. So-called beyond-visible-line-of-sight flights offer some of the greatest potential for commercial operations, but they also are among the most hard technically to ensure they don't strike other aircraft or veer off course.

Chao said the U.S.is at a tipping point in the introduction of drones.

Brockman said the airport authority has been working on the application since previous year.

With assistance from Thomas Black.

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