Category Archives: In the mainstream news

News reports published in the mainstream media.

Russian military bases attacked by swarm of home-made drone bombers.

The Russian Ministry of Defence claims its forces in Syria were attacked a week ago by a swarm of home-made drones – the first time such a coordinated assault has been reported in a military action.

While photographs of the improvised UAVs used in the assault make the drones look clunky and strung together, the Russians’ analysis reveals they were armed with explosives and launched from a site more than 50 kilometres (31 miles) distant from their targets, navigating the trek via GPS and altitude-control sensors.

The Ministry says a technical examination indicates these drones would have an effective attacking range of about 100 kilometres (62 miles) – which is pretty terrifying – and means that in the new era of UAV warfare, locations that once may have seemed immune to attack, are in fact exposed.

Read the full story here.

A drone operated by a CBS 60 Minutes film crew crashed into a power line.

The drone crash occurred in the northern part of Webb County, Texas, on Tuesday between Laredo and San Antonio. Officials stated the crash happened near the checkpoint operated by Border Patrol agents used to interdict drug and human smuggling operation.

U.S. Border Patrol officials stated that a CBS 60 Minutes film crew was working near the checkpoint in coordination with a Border Patrol agent assigned by the Laredo Sector communications office. During the filming, the pilot accidentally struck the power line causing the loss of power.

The drone pilot was properly licensed and accidentally contacted the wires with the drone. The power outage lasted about two hours.

Read the full story here.

OK Airlines, you can stop picking on Drones now.

The crew of a Cathay Pacific flight saw what it believes was North Korea’s latest missile test last week, the second airline to report sighting it.

Cathay said Monday that the flight from San Francisco to Hong Kong reported witnessing the apparent re-entry of the ICBM that North Korea launched before dawn Wednesday.

The missile was far from the plane, and operation was unaffected, Cathay said, adding that it had informed other carriers and relevant authorities.

“At the moment, no one is changing any routes or operating parameters,” the Hong Kong-based airline said in a statement. “We remain alert and (will) review the situation as it evolves.”

Read the full story here.

Simulations of what happens when a drone collides with an airliner.

Drones inflict more damage than birds of the same size when they hit a plane, simulations show.

Drones that collide with planes cause more damage than birds of the same size because of their solid motors, batteries and other parts, a study released by the Federal Aviation Administration on Tuesday found.

The study’s researchers say aircraft-manufacturing standards designed for bird strikes aren’t appropriate for ensuring planes can withstand collisions with drones. The FAA said it will depend on drone makers to help develop technology to detect and avoid planes.

Read the full story here.

Congress Poised to Restore Drone Registration Tossed by Court

The government’s registration system for owners of civilian drones would be restored in a defense policy bill agreed to by House and Senate negotiators.

The measure boosting aviation regulators’ ability to regulate the burgeoning world of small unmanned vehicles was contained in the National Defense Authorization Act for 2018, a bipartisan compromise that is likely to be passed by both chambers.

Read the full story here.

Amazon’s Dream of Drone Deliveries Get Closer With Trump’s Executive Order

Drone deliveries got a step closer to reality as the White House issued an order giving local governments more authority to conduct tests of the burgeoning new technology.

 President Donald Trump on Wednesday signed an executive order designed to speed the approval of drone flights over crowds and for longer distances. The administration says it wants to open new commercial uses for the aircraft and create jobs.

“In order to maintain American leadership in this emerging industry here at home, our country needs a regulatory framework that encourages innovation while insuring airspace safety,” Michael Kratsios, a deputy assistant to the president at the Office of Science and Technology Policy, said in a briefing with reporters.

Read the full story here.

LAPD becomes nation’s largest police department to test drones.

After months of often-heated debate, a civilian oversight panel Tuesday signed off on a yearlong test of drones by the Los Angeles Police Department, which will become the largest police department in the nation to deploy the controversial technology.

The Police Commission’s 3-1 vote prompted jeers, cursing and a small protest that spilled into a downtown intersection just outside the LAPD’s glass headquarters — evidence of the opposition police have faced in recent weeks as they tried to reassure wary residents that the airborne devices would not be misused.

Read the full story here.