SYRACUSE, N.Y. (WSYR-TV) – The NUAIR Alliance for unmanned aerial vehicles, based in Central New York, is on the verge of a huge development for the industry.
NUAIR is waiting for approval any day now from the FAA to be able to start test flying drones Beyond Visual Line of Sight in a 6-mile corridor from Rome to Oriskany.
One of the biggest holdups to things like package and other deliveries is the FAA approval to fly these unmanned machines without someone on the ground able to watch it.
Right now it is prohibited to fly without someone who is able to see the drone at all times.
Mark “Hoot” Gibson, President & CEO of the NUAIR Alliance, says, “So if you want to go fly without eyes on and fly over people it would be nice to know it meets standards, its reliable and if its not we have systems that will tells us its overheating or what have you.”
The drones in the initial test corridor will be tracked by radars produced by SRC and a mobile unit built of Raytheon.
NUAIR is also working on a similar system of tracking drones inside a 50-mile test corridor from Rome’s Griffiss International Airport to Syracuse as early as next Fall.
Gibson tells NewsChannel 9, “We know we can do the one off, we fold up and we go home but we gotta start building reliability data, we need to start building operation performance standards.”
Next week an Alaskan company will conduct another very important drone test at Griffiss.
“They’ll fly it, we get to pull the plug without any warning and it should react, the parachute should deploy and softly lower it to the ground. So if you’re over people and it fails you still have something that’s not going to create serious injuries,” Gibson says.
NUAIR has also signed a deal with Unifly, a big company out of Belgium, to make Central New York its US headquarters.