Can pilotless planes soar over safety, privacy and regulatory barriers?
Drone aircraft, until recently the domain of the military and a handful of hobbyists, play an increasing role in businesses, including agriculture, engineering and real estate. Still more untested uses are under consideration, such as using drones to deliver packages to customers. Millions of consumers also are buying the machines and taking to the skies. This rapid growth in drone use has increased concerns about safety and privacy. Change has come so quickly, regulators have been unable to keep pace. In the United States, the Federal Aviation Administration has yet to release commercial use regulations, instead allowing operations through what those in the industry say is a cumbersome case-by-case exemption process. Among the issues under debate: Can regulators and the industry resolve questions of safety and privacy? Is the United States falling behind in drone innovation? Can drones be used on a large scale for deliveries?
Hogan, Steven, “The Drone Revolution: How Robotic Aviation Will Change the World,” CreateSpace, 2015. A lawyer who specializes in drones discusses how the technology will change multiple industries.
Rupprecht, Jonathan, “Drones: Their Many Civilian Uses and the U.S. Laws Surrounding Them,” CreateSpace, 2015. A lawyer who is also a commercial pilot examines the complex regulations surrounding drones in the United States.
Whittle, Richard, “Predator: The Secret Origins of the Drone Revolution,” Picador, 2015. A global fellow at the Woodrow Wilson Center who has studied the military for three decades looks at the history of the world’s most advanced military drone.
Goglia, John, “FAA speeds up small drone exemptions. But why not just issue blanket exemption?” Forbes.com blog, April 12, 2015, http://tinyurl.com/
Gross, Doug, “Amazon’s drone delivery: How would it work?” CNN, Dec. 2, 2013, http://tinyurl.com/
Hill, Kashmir, “Congress Welcomes The Drones,” Forbes, Feb. 7, 2012, http://tinyurl.com/
Hoye, Matthew, and Rene Marsh, “Who’s in charge of regulating commercial drones?” CNN, March 19, 2015, http://tinyurl.com/
Marsh, Rene, “FAA tests technology to counter rogue drones,” CNN, Oct. 7, 2015, http://tinyurl.com/
Nicas, Jack, “Criminals, Terrorists Find Uses for Drones, Raising Concerns,” The Wall Street Journal, Jan. 28, 2015, http://tinyurl.com/
Palermo, Elizabeth, “Laser Weapon Melts Test Drone in Midair,” Livescience, Sept. 9, 2015, http://tinyurl.com/
Scott, Alwyn, “Americans OK with police drones—private ownership, not so much: Poll,” Reuters, Feb. 5, 2015, http://tinyurl.com/
Surowiecki, James, “Why drone delivery won’t replace the UPS guy,” The New Yorker, Dec. 5, 2013, http://tinyurl.com/
Swearingen, Jake, “1 Million Drones Will Be Sold This Christmas, and the FAA Is Terrified,” Popular Mechanics, Sept. 29, 2015, http://tinyurl.com/
“Welcome to the Drone Age: Miniature, pilot-less aircraft are on the verge of becoming commonplace,” The Economist, Sept. 26, 2015, http://tinyurl.com/
Whitlock, Craig, “FAA will miss deadline to integrate drones in U.S. skies, report says,” The Washington Post, June 30, 3014, http://tinyurl.com/
Reports and Studies
“Drones Take Flight: Key issues for insurance,” Lloyd’s of London, 2015, http://tinyurl.com/
“The Economic Impact of Unmanned Aircraft Systems Integration in the United States,” Association for Unmanned Vehicle Systems International, March 2013, http://tinyurl.com/
“The First 1,000 Commercial Exemptions,” Association for Unmanned Vehicle Systems International, 2015, http://www.auvsi.org/
“Overview of Small UAS Notice of Proposed Rulemaking,” Federal Aviation Administration, Feb. 15, 2015, http://tinyurl.com/
“Section 333,” Federal Aviation Administration, undated, http://tinyurl.com/
Hazel, Bob, and Georges Aoude, “In Commercial Drones, the Race Is On: Aviation’s Fastest-Growing Sector Outpaces US Regulators,” Oliver Wyman, 2015, http://tinyurl.com/
The Next Step
Ames, Paul, “Why Europe Loves Drones,” The Week, May 17, 2015, http://tinyurl.com/
Huifeng, He, “China cracks down on drone usage with new regulations but most consumers needn’t worry,” South China Morning Post, Dec. 1, 2015, http://tinyurl.com/
Johnson, Tim, “As drone usage soars in Latin America, so do concerns,” McClatchy Newspapers, Aug. 31, 2015, http://tinyurl.com/
Lee, Deron, “Why a drone journalism educator is getting his pilot’s license,” Columbia Journalism Review, Aug. 28, 2015, http://tinyurl.com/
Michel, Arthur Holland, “The cheapest way to get a drone license is to take hot air balloon lessons,” The Verge, Aug. 27, 2015, http://tinyurl.com/
Thielman, Sam, “Drone owners get Christmas surprise from FAA: you will have to register to fly,” The Guardian, Dec. 14, 2015, http://tinyurl.com/
Burns, Amy Clarke, “Drones raise privacy concerns, questions,” The Greenville [S.C.] News, Aug. 19, 2015, http://tinyurl.com/
Finley, Klint, “Even Super-Small Drones Would Have to Register Under Federal Proposal,” Wired, Nov. 23, 2015, http://tinyurl.com/
Pramuk, Jacob, “Drone battle’s next front: Your local government,” CNBC, Dec. 24, 2015, http://tinyurl.com/
Ranaivo, Yann, “Virginia Tech research: What dangers do drones pose for airlines?” The Roanoke Times, Dec. 3, 2015, http://tinyurl.com/
Rocheleau, Matt, “Close calls between drones, planes on the rise,” The Boston Globe, Dec. 21, 2015, http://tinyurl.com/
Shead, Sam, “A Belgian startup is trying to make ‘the world’s safest drone,’” Business Insider, Dec. 3, 2015, http://tinyurl.com/
American Civil Liberties Union
125 Broad St., 18th Floor, New York, NY 10004
Advocacy organization for personal liberties and privacy rights.
Association for Unmanned Vehicle Systems International
2700 S. Quincy St., Suite 400, Arlington, VA 22206
Association representing drone industry and manufacturers.
Center for the Study of the Drone
Bard College, Campus Road, PO Box 5000, Annandale-on-Hudson, NY 12504-5000
Research, education and art community working to understand unmanned aerial vehicles.
Center for Unmanned Aircraft Systems
John D. Odegard School of Aerospace Sciences, University of North Dakota, Clifford Hall Room 260, 3980 Campus Road, Stop 9007, Grand Forks, ND 58202-9007
One of the country’s premiere aviation schools and research centers on unmanned aircraft systems.
Federal Aviation Administration
800 Independence Ave., S.W., Washington, DC 20591
Federal agency responsible for regulating airspace and manned and unmanned aircraft.
Information Technology & Innovation Foundation
1101 K St., N.W., Suite 610, Washington, DC 20005
Research and educational institute focusing on critical issues at the intersection of technological innovation and public policy.
Small UAV Coalition
Drone industry group that advocates for law and policy changes to permit the operation of small unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) beyond line-of-sight, and with autonomy, for commercial, consumer, recreational and philanthropic purposes.