Drones

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Old 02-12-15, 07:37 PM
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Drones

I was wondering how many members have their own drones. People are buying them for recreation. I guess a drone would be considered an expensive toy. There aren't any regulations on them but I imagine that there will be sooner or later.
 
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Old 02-12-15, 08:35 PM
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I was thinking the other day between Photoshop and drones no one will ever again believe in blurry pictures of UFOs.

On topic the drones are really just an evolution of RC model planes which were an evolution of control line model planes.
 
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Old 02-12-15, 10:28 PM
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As with anything, they have their perfect applications and then there will be idiots who will want to film the pilots face while he is taking of in a 747, or the lady next door. Between cell phone type cameras, security cameras, and drones, there will eventually have to be some restrictions. I don't do anything wrong, but it bothers me to think that someone could photograph my every move and post it on the internet. Personally, if anyone is going to film me or my property I want to be able to say "NO" before it is published anywhere. Drones and all forms of cameras are just in their beginning.

On the "do it right" side I know of one camera buff who has expanded significantly with his drone capabilities. Good demand for his services.

Bud
 
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Old 02-13-15, 04:35 AM
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There are in fact some restrictions on drones. mainly for air ports and government. However, the drone industry and manufactures have set up a voluntary "No Fly Zone" that you can register at. Supposedly the air space above your house is your property.
 
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Old 02-13-15, 06:32 AM
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I most recently flew RC helicopters. Most had a gyro to selectively stabilize or control the tail but that was the extend of their automation. I do not have a drone but I've been around with others flying theirs. They are pretty cool and almost like magic... and it's much more fun to watch someone else's $1k toy crash.

---
Like Norm mentions. There are restrictions as to where and how any drone or RC aircraft can be flown. I think it's not within 5 miles of an airport, must be below 400 ft altitude and withing sight of the operator or something about like that.

The problem is that drones are now relatively inexpensive and capable enough to allow any idiot to operate one. Most RC pilots are "pilots". They take pride and care in operating their aircraft. Now we have a whole generation capable of putting things in the air with no training or thought of the consequences.
 
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Old 02-13-15, 07:19 AM
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So far, I haven't heard of anyone going totally nuts with drones. I know someone who has one. He's 54 so he has some sense. I doubt that I'll ever buy a drone but I figured it was a good time to invest in them, before all kinds of new laws are enacted. There is a company called Aero Vironment (AVAV) on the NASDAQ that manufactures them & supposedly has a contract with Pentagon. It's about $26.00 a share. I bought 100 shares. I usually don't invest, in stocks but the drone that fell on the white house lawn made me think that it might be worth a shot.
 
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Old 02-13-15, 07:57 AM
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There are some technologies coming out that might save the industry. One manufacturer is incorporating a airport database in the drones memory and using it's onboard GPS so it can not be operated within 5 miles of an airport. One is considering a barometric altimeter that will prevent the drone from flying above several hundred feet. Another manufacturer is working on an anti-collision system so the drone can keep itself from flying into obstacles like trees or buildings. The big unknown is if the industry will change fast enough to avoid an outright ban on non-licensed sale and use of drones.

People cannot resist sending their drones to high altitude on approach and departure routes to airports. It's a weekly occurrence now where drones are spotted by aircrew in near misses. There are videos online of them being flown through and above clouds to altitudes over 5'000 feet. I'm afraid there will be an accident which might lead to an emergency ruling clamping down on the industry that will greatly curtail sales to the general public.
 
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Old 02-13-15, 08:05 AM
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The big unknown is if the industry will change fast enough
The big question is will they be able to keep up with the idiots on YouTube posting ways to defeat those features.
 

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Old 02-13-15, 10:32 AM
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Sorta like the Keurig 2.0. It only took a few days for hacks to appear on the web showing how to bypass their required RFID chip in the K-cups.
 
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Old 02-13-15, 01:13 PM
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A bill has been introduced in the Washington state legislature to add a prison sentence to any crime that was committed with the use of a drone.

Washington state bill would add prison time for drone crimes | Local & Regional | Seattle News, Weather, Sports, Breaking News | KOMO News
 
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Old 02-13-15, 02:26 PM
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People cannot resist sending their drones to high altitude on approach and departure routes to airports.
AFAIK, air space under 1,200 feet is not regulated by the FAA. I didn't know that those home drones could reach that altitude. Apparently, they can.
 
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Old 02-13-15, 03:21 PM
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My attitude so far, if one were to linger over my property, is that I am pretty darn good with clays, sooo...

But then I'm not interested in spending that amount of time in the subsequent litigation, so am thinking that model rocketry may be the answer. One toy against another.

Frankly though, the older I get, the less patience I have with people focused on their own gratification, with no respect for others.
 
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Old 02-13-15, 03:33 PM
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I live in San Diego. I would not suggest flying one over military airspace. They may have some questions for you.
 
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Old 02-13-15, 07:40 PM
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If one buzzed me I don't think I would care. However if it persisted then I might retaliate.
 
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Old 02-14-15, 04:50 AM
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There are certainly many different levels of capability when it comes to drones. My 7 year old nephew got one for christmas. It's pretty basic and wouldn't be able to fly very high at all. This industry is not in danger of going away. There is too much potential with drones. Unfortunately, the FAA is a slow moving beast and isn't going to come up with good regulations fast enough. I'm sure there are a million ways for technology to be used to make sure drones behave.
 
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Old 02-14-15, 05:17 AM
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The airspace and whether or not it is regulated varies by location. Class G uncontrolled space is almost non-existent in the east but there are some large areas in the west. Then there are TFRs (temporary flight restrictions) that change the standard regulations. For quite a time after 9/11 much of the unrestricted airspace was closed.






---
I agree that the FAA is slow in reacting. They are the government. Need I say anymore?

A big problem is the uneducated, ignorant or people knowingly breaking the law confident that they can't be caught. There are already regulations governing much of the airspace and the rules are being very routinely broken by people operating drones.

It's not like an airplane where they will have police waiting at the airport. An airplane's gotta land sometime and they show up on existing radar so you can see where they are and where they are going. Drones can launch and land anywhere and don't show up on most civilian radar. Whether you're flying drugs across the border, landing on the White House lawn or flying in controlled airspace operators will just abandon their toys and not incur law enforcement even under the current laws. Will adding even more laws change anything???
 
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Old 02-14-15, 08:28 AM
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Regulations need to be set up for drones, other laws that are designed to discourage invasion of privacy. Such as a drone peering in my upstairs window. The other component would be a requirement for the drones to carry ID tags of some sort. RFID or some other technology that makes them identifiable to others. You would also need a requirement to register them so this information can be used to locate the perpetrators. Other regulations that dictate capabilities of drones would help as well. The low cost consumer drones could be restricted in their ability to climb in altitude and areas to fly as was suggested before using GPS.

The primary concern is safety of other aircraft. The secondary concern is privacy.
 
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Old 02-14-15, 08:43 AM
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Maybe we can mount anti-drone machine guns on our roof tops.

 
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Old 02-14-15, 09:06 AM
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Old 02-14-15, 01:44 PM
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Drooplug, I don't want the industry to "go away" & I'm no rush for new laws. That's why I bought that stock (AVAV). Privacy invasion is in full swing & no laws are going to stop it. The gov doesn't follow their own laws anyway.
 
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Old 02-14-15, 03:30 PM
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I agree that it is a hot and growing industry. My concern is enforcement/compliance. If they can't get people to follow the laws & regulations it's up to the manufacturers to come up with systems to insure safety for aircraft. If not I can see some serious regulation or restrictions placed on the industry. Can you imagine the outcry if an airliner hits one and people end up hurt or killed.

The technology exists and the general population is showing that they are not responsible operating it. That's just asking for whiplash regulation. Laws/legislation is slow in coming (it's the government) but when it does it could be draconian.

If you want to keep up on regulation and the feel in the industry I'd suggest reading Aviation Week and Space Technology magazine. It's a weekly magazine that reports on anything in the air. It's technical and intended for those in the industry so it's not light reading but it's incredibly informative if you are investing in that sector. Unfortunately it's a an expensive subscription but you might have access to it at your local library. There are articles almost every week covering drones from low end toys to million dollar military monsters.
 
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Old 02-14-15, 04:29 PM
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Pilot Dane, I'm not interested in the new laws, at least not yet. If & when it affects my stock (AVAV) then I'll be interested. I don't expect any new laws at the Federal level, any time soon. When one side says yes, the other side says no. Local laws stand a better chance of being enacted first. Time will tell.
 
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Old 02-14-15, 05:23 PM
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I don't think there is much to be done in local laws because this is FAA territory. If anyone gets hurt, you can bet there will be new laws to come fast and furious and they will be draconian in nature.
 
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Old 02-14-15, 07:15 PM
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The new laws could even be Droneconian in nature. Pun intended.
 
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Old 02-15-15, 05:03 AM
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Yes, drooplug is correct. Airspace is federal jurisdiction. 9/11 established a precedent for the FAA when they closed the airspace to everything. Then heavy restrictions were retained for months and many restrictions still remain today. Since 9/11 they have been rather liberal in establishing "temporary" flight restrictions. One accident involving a passenger aircraft could dramatically affect that industry in an instant. That's why several manufacturers are voluntarily developing systems to prevent them from being used improperly. They realize that they are one accident away from being out of business.
 
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Old 02-15-15, 06:14 AM
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An accident would probably be the only motivation that would get congress to enact any laws pertaining to drones.
 
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Old 02-15-15, 06:56 AM
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According to this morning paper the Washington Post (via Bloomberg News) reports that a study will have the first commercial drones within a 500 ft cieling, within sight of operator and daytime use only.
 
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Old 02-15-15, 06:56 AM
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The last thing we need is a bunch of old guys who know very little about technology enacting any laws about technology.
 
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Old 02-15-15, 07:08 AM
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Drones are like the bad intersection that doesn't get a stop light until something bad happens. With drones it isn't a case "if" something bad will happen, just when. Technology is opening all sorts of Pandora's and this is a bad one. Just let your mind wander thinking about Amazon's proposed delivery system, a drone that can fly to a destination and drop a package and probably do so all by itself. Rules and regulations will not protect us from something terrible happening. I see ALL drones being banned outside of military use. If you disagree, you didn't let your mind wander far enough.

Bud
 
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Old 02-15-15, 07:11 AM
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Droo, That kind of hit a sore spot. I don't necessarily dis-agree with you but with age comes wisdom. I'm all for technology, but we have a bad habit of letting technology getting ahead of our sensibilities. I do fret about the privacy issue. And I worry about the interference drones cause in air traffic. I would much rather error on the side of caution and have restrictions enacted as opposed to a free for all. The downside is that laws have a way of becoming outdated and hard to get rid of. If the industry is willing to police itself in a all out way then things can be good without government intervention. But, alas that never happens. Cases in point, seat belt laws, smoking laws and general product safety.
 
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Old 02-15-15, 07:25 AM
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I think he's right about old farts enacting laws about things they know nothing. The seat belt idea itself may have come from wisdom but the final one size fits all design certainly didn't. They just choke short people. I remember Gov Mario Cuomo saying, I don't want to sign a bill that is going to make people uncomfortable but that's basically what happened. The original seat belts didn't have a shoulder harness. They were good. Then the shoulder harness was invented & now they suck.
 
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Old 02-15-15, 10:09 AM
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Just for the sake of argument I'll play the devil advocate. I dare say most of these old farts are a lot more knowledgeable than most of us. They have to be. They are constantly deluged with people from both sides of the fence on almost any subject. As opposed to ourselves that most often only see things from our own perspective. That does not mean they are always right or make the correct decision. We are so quick to fault politician decisions as catering to the minority or the one's who make the most noise. I've said before and I'll say it again who of us here go to a town meeting, school board meeting or attend civic events and voice our concerns on regular basis? Oh, if it concerns us directly we'll be there, but not otherwise. The silent majority is in fact silent. The squeaky wheel gets the oil.

Seat belts are great example. They may not be comfortable to you, but a car is made for the masses not just you. Statistics prove a shoulder harness is much much better than a seat belt in preventing injury. Insurance companies realized this and pushed for it. That squeaky wheel again.
A car is made as are seat belts to fit the largest average population and as many adjustments are incorporate to accommodate the largest average population. Years ago I took a course called Human Factors Engineering (the name has been changed many times). You can't design any apparatus to fit exactly every individual. (You can but it's not cost effective.) And style and glitz will always take precedence over ease of use or safety.

Anyway, to get back on topic, first laws will be enacted to protect the air industry, then to some extent privacy issues, then if enough voices chime in, the drone industry will get what they want (which is unfettered market and scope). So the smart idea is to self regulate the drone industry so govt won't get involved. But that won't happen because corporate greed always trumps common sense. So the inefficiencies of gov't will reign.

Man, I can be long winded sometimes!
 
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Old 02-15-15, 11:09 AM
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Drone on: US proposes rules for the era of drones

The FAA recognizes the importance of the drone industry. They will not ban all drones.

I wasn't saying that all older people don't know anything about technology. However, the ones in our Capitol are not the swiftest bunch.

I'm 5'6" and have never had a problem with a seat belt. My mother is shorter than me and I have never heard her complain about her seat belt. I'm not sure when this became common place, but the height of the shoulder harness has an adjustment. I'm sorry Pulpo, but the seat belt laws have saved us all a tremendous amount of money.
 
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Old 02-15-15, 11:49 AM
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Two people can both be 5' 6" but one has a longer torso than the other. My vehicle has an adjustment on the harness but it's still not right BMW realized the problem & gave the drivers what looked like money clips to clip the harness to the seat belt. That removed the pressure from peoples' necks. Laws have to be good for everyone not just some.
 
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Old 02-15-15, 12:00 PM
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Many people use that lambs fleece sleeve to help ease the tightness of the shoulder harness on they're neck and shoulder. I'd be willing to use a three point harness that the race car drivers use. Remember the cars with the automatic seat belts attached to the door? What pain those were.
 
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Old 02-15-15, 12:10 PM
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Now I should buy some fleece? I've already been fleeced enough already.
 
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Old 02-15-15, 03:36 PM
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You guys over estimate what Congress does. Congress is not involved with and is not required to restrict air activity. Congress did not vote when the nations airspace was shut down after 9/11 and congress is not consulted before closing the airspace over the Superbowl or a forest fire. Congress does not vote to approve or ban drugs either.

The FAA is charged with both promoting and regulating aviation. It's a well known conflict but who do you think spends more on lobbyists schmoozing in Washington? The airline industry or the quad copter companies?

If a quad copter brings down an airliner where do you think the regulatory attention will be focused? The FAA will not ground the airlines. I bet there will be a draconian clampdown on remotely piloted air vehicles. Small drones of very limited capability (toys) would be permitted but anything bigger and more capable would probably require some sort of registration or licensing to keep it out of the hands of the average idiot. A key point of this registration/licensing would be enforcement. A advanced drone could not fly without it being traceable to somone responsible for it's operation. Gone would be the days of crashing on the White House lawn and just walking away from your toy without repercussion.

Notice that after the Oklahoma City bombing the NTSB did not shut down trucking. It was a truck that delivered the bomb and nothing was done about the method of delivery. 9/11 airplanes were were the method of delivery and the airspace of the entire nation was shut down and some restrictions remain in place to this day. The FAA can move very quickly when it wants to.

---
For a year after 9/11 I wouldn't take off or go anywhere without enough fuel onboard to make it back home. Friday afternoon and heading for the beach. I can see the ocean, the beach and sonofaB! %^$# they closed the airspace. I can continue flying but once I land I'm stuck there. So, always stay within range of somewhere you want to be grounded.

I've been up practicing aerobatics and had a pair of F-18's come by to intercept. A totally legal area and the intercepting pilots were very cool and knew what was going on but it shows that they (FAA?) will spend $100k just to check me out.

The public has a very different view of aviation than any other mode of transportation. Many are killed in car crashes every day and it barely make the news but if an airplane lands without it's nose gear down (and nobody is injured) it makes the news. It's not rational but things in the air tend to freak people out and they tend to overreact and as 9/11 showed you can get extreme reaction from the regulating agency.
 
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