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Begun-the drone wars have_MKII.
#46
(09-01-2017, 08:07 AM)kharon Wrote: Silence, the stern reply.

Ain’t ‘drones’ great. I was reading about the Life Savers and the on going Westpac support for that great organisation, the use of drones on our crowded city beaches is a brilliant application of a useful working tool. Then I note that ATSB have embraced the system, another great application; both operations becoming more efficient and effective. All done properly, legal, sane and sensible. How good is that? How could any pilot have a quarrel with those applications, would you even think there was a risk of being clipped by the Westpac or ATSB units; of course not.

It is so simple; get a drone, get qualified, follow the code and the risks to other users of air space are reduced to a very acceptable level. It begs the question though; why can’t the Senate committee get a ‘straight’ answer to their questions? Honestly; I’ve sat here for a couple of hours now, listening to and watching the latest ‘discussions’ between the committee and the agencies; and, to be fair the Senators are much better informed and have more ‘innovative’ ideas than any of the ‘expert’ agencies. The questions posed are ducked, the scenario’s presented seem beyond the imagination of the ‘experts’ and the answers are provided in such a defensive manner that you have to wonder just what, in the seven hells the agencies are thinking with.

There where, during the session, several valid, sensible, realistic ‘options’ presented by the committee, which –had they been treated as a ‘discussion’ topic, could have resulted in a ‘good’ debate; maybe not too many solutions, but the topics could have been expanded, ‘explored’ and discussed. Who knows, maybe the germ of a workable solution could have been found. But no, the stone wall defences are raised and the ‘debate’ withers on the vine.    

Take O’Sullivan’s ‘big’ question – the one that really needs to be answered as it reflects a ‘philosophical’ basis for generating a rule set. The question posed was simple enough – to paraphrase – “Why must pilots undergo training, checking and licencing while ‘drone’ users do not?” Now it’s a fair question, but the silence of response was deafening. The question (IMO) goes to the very heart of the situation. We are not concerned about Hoody’s drone whizzing about – we are unconcerned about the Westpac Life Savers unit patrolling the beaches; nor are we concerned about any of the licenced operators using ‘drones’ carefully, correctly and sensibly. They simply are not a problem.

There is no use in looking to the agencies for ‘solutions’; but there was David Fawcett, presenting sensible, ‘do-able’ solutions. Did any one of the agencies enter into the spirit of discussion, argue the case against his solution; or, offer to explore ways and means; or, even humbly suggest a better way to approach the ‘problem’? No; is the short answer, they did not. Now we must ask why. Why is there no innovation, imagination or solutions being offered by our expensive, ‘expert’ agencies.  

If the agencies can’t sort it out, double quick and get ahead of the game, then we heading toward the O’Sullivan worst case, scary scenario – where he uses the example of 50,000 guns released, un licenced and unregistered. It may be ‘politically’ unpopular to enforce ‘safety’ rules and requirements, But so is scraping body parts off city buildings when a Police or Ambulance helicopter tail rotor is destroyed by an unauthorised, unlicensed, untrained thrill seeker.

“The burden” of the questions has not been responded to in any meaningful way. This is no where near good enough; is it?  

The whole session is – HERE – for your consideration.  

Toot – toot….

Excellent post and the burden of the unanswered Senator Barry O question (now QON) will I feel remain unanswered until such time as Dr A is frog marched from the FF HQ building (Aviation House)... Rolleyes

However I get the feeling that if aviation legal guru Joseph Wheeler was in charge of the Fort Fumble LSD, that the burden of Barry O's QON would be promptly answered and a legislative solution put forward within days of receiving the QON... Wink

Here is JW talking on the issue today, courtesy of the Oz:

 
Quote:
Quote:Law of air must be stronger
[Image: 0e66178edc703674f093305a6d736727]12:00amJOSEPH WHEELER
There is insufficient legal deterrent for the use of remotely piloted aircraft systems.


Law must be stronger to deal with malicious use of drones

JOSEPH WHEELER The Australian 12:00AM September 1, 2017

Aviation is as much a drawcard for the criminal elements of our world as it is for those using its technology and systems to connect people and places. But at present, there is insufficient legal deterrent for the use of remotely piloted aircraft systems (RPAS) that endanger the safety of other aircraft.

Since the 1980s in particular, aerial terrorism in the form of ­hijackings and bombings have spawned both international legal mechanisms for deterrence and enforcement as well as domestic regulation in many states.

When states fail to prosecute or extradite aerial criminals, it leads to the imposition of economic sanctions and effectively, air transport isolation under The Hague and Montreal Conventions.

In 2001, the scale of this aerial terrorism rose in a spectacular way in the 11 September attacks. For the first time we witnessed the use of domestic passenger aircraft as missiles. The challenge for airlines and governments was and still remains the unpredictability of potential criminal acts against aircraft and their occupants.

While that challenge has not diminished, the level of global awareness and vigilance has increased exponentially such that major potential attacks can be foiled through effective intelligence-sharing.

Given all the focus on hijackings, our present international and local legal constructs are concentrated on the criminalisation of unlawful interference with aircraft crews and flights that endanger flight safety.

Thus, the present law may be insufficient to deal with the new potential species of threats when it comes to aviation security against RPAS or drones when they are used to threaten or endanger civilian flights, whether purposefully or through negligent use too close to civilian flights.

Crimes involving aircraft in Australian legislation depend on the definition of “Australian aircraft” in the Criminal Code Act 1995 (Commonwealth), which is not met typically by RPAS, whether they are commercial, recreational, or otherwise.

This is because, in the definition, there is a reliance on the aircraft being “registered or required to be registered” in Australia. That takes away the applicability of the act’s offence provisions from many RPAS in use in Australia, because there is no present legal requirement for registration.

This has some peculiar results. If, for example, an Australian-owned RPAS is used outside Australia’s territorial boundaries for the purposes of international law — that is, only 12 nautical miles from the waterline — activity which could otherwise be an offence if committed in Australia or on an Australian aircraft outside Australia, would not be an ­offence.

The same problem occurs with the Crimes (Aviation) Act 1991, which is responsible for the creation of offences such as “prejudicing safe operation of aircraft”, under which conduct such as threatening other flights by simply being too close to them might well be argued to fall under.

The offences in our legislation are the byproduct of the kinds of threats we have thus far encountered in aviation — typically politically inspired crimes — and have led to traditional manned aviation being the focus. The end result is our security legislation has seemingly not been examined with a mind to the malicious or criminal uses of RPAS.

This is why our “drone regulations” found in Part 101 of the Civil Aviation Safety Regulations 1998 criminalises only “unsafe ­operation” of RPAS, without sufficient regard to, in my view, imposing a penalty of sufficient magnitude to deter malicious, intentional or even negligent RPAS use near other aircraft.

There is clearly a need for a uniform system of prosecution and deterrence globally in ­aviation.

This challenge has partially been met on a smaller scale with regard to the criminalisation of unruly passenger offences. Such offences can and do threaten the safety of flights and passengers travelling on them.

As an observer for the International Federation of Airline Pilots Associations to the International Civil Aviation Organisation Task Force charged with updating guidance material on the legal aspects of unruly/disruptive passengers, I have seen first-hand the difficulty in trying to pin states down to a definition of just what “acceptable behaviour” is in air transport, given the variances in culture and behavioural norms around the world.

However, the criminalisation of acts endangering or threatening aviation such as using drones to endanger other flights should be easier to engage with.

It just requires the international community to decide to push through the diplomatic challenges to agree on a way to properly safeguard aviation from this and other new threats. Hopefully it will do so before pessimistic predictions of lost life from failure to engage with such difficult legal questions become a reality.

Joseph Wheeler is the principal of aerospace law firm IALPG, aviation legal counsel to the Australian Federation of Air Pilots, and national head of aviation law for Maurice Blackburn Lawyers.
MTF...P2 Tongue
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#47
http://www.abc.net.au/news/2017-08-31/wo...ey/8859008

"Drones will become the most disruptive technology in human history, American futurist Thomas Frey says, predicting that by the year 2030, there will be 1 billion drones in the world doing things people cannot yet imagine."

Could it be the horse has already bolted ?

P2 good catch Bumaye and congrats on your first post -  Wink

I did see that Aunty article and was getting to it and if you don't mind I think it is worth regurgitating in full so here goes
 Big Grin

Quote:1 billion drones in world by 2030, US futurist Thomas Frey says
By Meghna Bali

Updated yesterday at 1:32pm Thu 31 Aug 2017, 1:32pm
[Image: 8123084-3x2-700x467.jpg] Photo: A delivery drone in flight. (Supplied: Amazon)

Drones will become the most disruptive technology in human history, American futurist Thomas Frey says, predicting that by the year 2030, there will be 1 billion drones in the world doing things people cannot yet imagine.

[Image: 8859024-3x2-340x227.jpg]
Photo:
American futurist Thomas Frey predicts there will be a billion drones in the world as early as 2030. (ABC News: Meghna Bali)


Drones already deliver goods, fight climate change, monitor reefs, supply humanitarian aid, and take part in take part in races.

But the Colorado-based futurist argued at the inaugural World of Drones Congress in Brisbane today there remained limitless possibilities for cities of the future, if only people added a few new dimensions to their thinking.

"In the future drones are going to have multiple capabilities, so let's not think of them as little flying cameras," he told the audience.

"They can also roll on the ground, they can stick to the side of a building, float in the river, dive under water … they can climb a tree and attach themselves like a parasite to the side of a plane.

"A driverless car is a drone."

Dangers of a drone-driven society

Mr Frey said he believed one day every city would have its own fleet of drones, ready to make tasks more efficient across areas like health, education, business, travel, and leisure.

He wrote a list of 192 uses just for flying drones, but acknowledged this future would not come with challenges.

"If we assume that someday over 50,000 drones will fly over Brisbane, what's the responsibility of that city?" he said.
Quote:"The same drone that can deliver a package can also deliver bombs or spy on your kids … and now we're starting to see weaponised drones — who has the right or the obligation to shoot a drone out of the air?"





Australian privacy law playing catch-up

Queensland University of Technology law professor Des Butler warned legislation governing privacy in Queensland, Tasmania and the ACT was still stuck in the 1970s.

"Our privacy laws are piecemeal collections of common laws and statute laws, none of which provides a perfect coverage for people's privacy," Mr Butler said.

He said instead of being dedicated to issues arising from drone use, current privacy law was a mixture of trespass, data protection and surveillance.
Quote:"Some state surveillance laws apply to optical surveillance devices, such as a camera on a drone … but in Queensland our laws only go so far as listening devices," Mr Butler said.

The weaknesses in law were especially clear in an April incident where a skinny-dipping woman in Darwin was shocked to find a drone hovering over her suburban backyard.

"Even that lady with the best [privacy] regime in Australia didn't have a lot of recourse because if she's going to take any action about the drone then she needs to know who the operator is," Mr Butler said.

"Or at least the police need to have some way of tracking them down."

Leveraging benefits and avoiding dangers

To try and address the opportunities and regulatory challenges the growing drone industry presents, the Queensland Government has begun developing the Australia's first drones strategy.

Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk called for ideas from industry stakeholders to help direct policy in the area at the congress earlier this morning.

"Your insights and input will also help to strengthen our strategy and ensure we maximise this industry's full and evolving potential," she said.



Apparently this is from a speaker at "World of Drones" congress in Briz on now would you believe ? How is it that this major drone gabfest was not mentioned in senate hearings just days ago, and as far as I know received no publicity until this Aunty story ?


https://www.worldofdrones.com.au/speakers
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#48
RRAT committee on the warpath - Huh

Just reviewing the Hansard from last week's hearing: Rural and Regional Affairs and Transport References Committee (Senate-Tuesday, 29 August 2017)

I must admit to not being particularly interested in the AAA section of that hearing but in hindsight I believe that segment was more enlightening than the combined 3 aviation safety Stooges segments that followed... Rolleyes

Examples:
Quote:Senator O'SULLIVAN: My concern is, gentlemen, you represent these airports. I'm focusing my questions now on the operations of X airport, and I have to be honest, I haven't picked up the same feeling of urgency from your testimony to date that we seem to have inherited as a committee. Why would you bother to have radar control and air traffic control over one piece of tin? What would your view be? Should we not call for air traffic control over the other pieces of tin, wherever there is a capacity for those pieces of tin to share space?

Mr Bourke : I would probably align with what you're saying there, where we have RPAS potentially operating in protected airspace then there probably is a role for air traffic control to get involved. I note you have Airservices on the agenda later today, so that's probably a good question to put to them on what steps they're taking in that space. If RPAS into the future are going to be operating in that same protected airspace as commercial aircraft then we certainly would be advocating there should be a form of traffic control.

Senator O'SULLIVAN: Don't worry about the future; you've had 180 incidents reported in the present, in the proximity of aircraft that have left your airport. It's happening now. What I'm trying to urge is that we start to get a scream out of the balance of industry to support this question. We need to make the highest possible standards around this. I'm worried that you are comfortable with the three kilometre zone when your pilots are not comfortable with 40 kilometres. I'm worried that you want to operate your airports where one piece of tin is regulated to the nth degree, but I'm not hearing a shout out of you to say anybody that has the capacity to get within a bull's roar of my planes ought to meet all the same standards about pilot training, registration, maintenance of aircraft, understanding meteorology, being on the radar, air traffic control, the whole thing.

Gentlemen, I'm trying to urge you to say: 'Listen, the standards ought to be identical, and if not, why not?'

Senator FAWCETT: I'll skip to the prevention part then, to follow that line of questioning. Airports have accepted for many years the responsibility to reduce hazards over things like bird strikes, and so you spend a lot of money on reducing lying water and on having bird scaring or other activities. You prevent the incursion onto the airfield physically of animals or people or other things that may present a hazard to the aircraft that operate from your airfield. Why is it that you don't see you also have an obligation to expend resources and time in preventing, to the extent you can, the hazard presented by another form of object, whether it be animal, bird, person or, in this case, an RPAS?

Mr Goodwin : It's not that we don't see it. In fact, we are looking at this and we've been talking and assessing that risk internally for quite some time. I sit on an international committee as well, which has been talking about this for almost two years. I have been working with them, and they work directly with ICAO. However, it's the regulator who tells us what we have to do. We can do more, and that's why we're investigating some of these emerging technologies. But it is something that is an emerging technology around us too, so we don't understand it all. We don't understand every drone and everything.

We haven't got that sort of knowledge yet ourselves, so it's something we are investigating. But we work with the regulator to enforce what they tell us that we have to do. At this stage, there are limited regulations around that, and they are the ones that we're working towards and working with them on that. It's not that we're not aware of it, not that we don't want to take extra; it's a question of: how do you do that and what's the best solution which is going to benefit everybody? We're not the only player in here.

We've got other big players, like Airservices and the like, who have technology out there as well. We don't want to put something in place that's going to interfere with theirs.

There are integration issues as well. There will probably be quite a bit of discussion we have to do with a number of players before we get to an answer on that.

Senator FAWCETT: On the technological front, I'm aware the Americans have things like DroneShield there; the Chinese are talking about what they're calling the great electronic wall of China around airports; the Russians talk about GPS spoofing and things like that. They're different terminologies but essentially the same concept.

Mr Goodwin : Yes.

Senator FAWCETT: You've mentioned you're looking at it in principle. Do you have a timeline? Are you looking to do trials or an operational capability assessment?

Mr Goodwin : Not as yet, to be honest. It's something we've probably only been looking at seriously in the last, say, eight or nine months. So we haven't really come to a conclusion on that. We've just been talking to some vendors and seeing what's possible. I would be hopeful of having a trial—if we are going to do that—within a 12-month time frame, something like that.

Senator FAWCETT: Mr Bourke, from an AAA perspective, are you encouraging airports, particularly the major airports, or the secondaries, around Australia to actively collaborate with you? If we're going to have a technology that works rather than each individual airport having different technologies, I would've assumed that AAA would've seen a role for itself. Are you active in this space?

Mr Bourke : I guess our main focus at the moment has been ensuring that the regulatory framework is in place to support these options.

Senator FAWCETT: Can I take that as a no?

Mr Bourke : No, we haven't been actively encouraging vendors to contact airports around solutions. What we do is share information on potential solutions that are being explored with our members. But, as Stephen has mentioned, to date it's really just been a trial and an information-gathering exercise, from my understanding, predominantly with the major airports, on potential solutions they might look at implementing. I don't have particular details on any trials that are underway, but I'm happy to take that on notice if that's something you're interested in.

Senator FAWCETT: We are, and we'd welcome feedback, but do you not see that AAA, as the association that is the umbrella for all of these airports, should be providing leadership in this?

Mr Bourke : Yes, I take your point. Where possible we would certainly encourage airports to take a proactive stance on addressing this technology. But our primary focus is ensuring that the regulatory framework's there to support it. As Stephen mentioned, CASA sets the regulatory framework for the safety management of airport operations, so I think it's appropriate that we have that appropriate regulatory environment set in place first, which can be supported by innovation and technology solutions that our airports can look into implementing. Certainly, AAA could take a more proactive role in that space.

Senator FAWCETT: Can I just make the point that, particularly in the area of aviation, if people waited for government to do things, we would have no aviation, aircraft, postal service or airlines; Toowoomba West would not have an airport. The private sector has always had, and will continue to have, a role in leading innovation in terms of capability and safety. The development of technology means that regulation is nearly always lagging. If the safety of the people who are using your airports is at stake, the private sector, which includes you as airport operators, has a role to play in that.

Mr Bourke : Most certainly, and, wherever possible, we have been trying to get this information out to all of our members, particularly through some of our events like our national conference. We've had a number of suppliers come along and present on drone shield type technologies and giving airports ideas for investigating what they can do to proactively manage this issue. We're certainly not sitting on our hands, pretending that this isn't an issue. That's not what I'm saying at all. What I'm saying is we're doing everything we can at the moment to share information for airports to implement these solutions as they see fit. But we really need that regulatory framework to sit underneath it to support how these things can be managed appropriately.

Senator FAWCETT: On a different aspect of prevention, you mentioned, Mr Goodwin, that you engage with stakeholders on your airport—leaseholders—about what they can and can't do with drones. I'm aware that the vast majority of airports liaise intensively with their local government bodies around traffic and road access, open water et cetera. Do you liaise with them around their control, their signage and their understanding of the risks that popular ovals or open spaces that the council controls—where people might go to fly RPAS—present in terms of being a hotspot or a node for intersecting with flight paths?

Have you done that analysis of what areas are around your airport and which council controls them, and have you engaged with them to help them understand the risk and to put in place appropriate signage and other things in those launch places to at least have one more layer of protection—this is James Reason's accident causation model—to try and prevent those incidents occurring?

CHAIR: A good question.

Mr Goodwin : Yes, it's a very good question. At this stage we haven't done that. We have a mechanism to that. We have a round table where we involve local government and various regulators, including CASA. That happens every couple of months. We will definitely take that on board to talk to them about that. We do it with wildlife already. Those areas are known—green spaces that attract certain types of species or parklands that attract flying foxes and things like that because of the type of trees et cetera, which are roosting areas for them. We have been very active in that space. I imagine it would only be an extension of that.

We're seeing a lot of evidence coming out about drones. Airports and airlines alike always assess risk. Risk is based on evidence of incidents, likelihood and frequency—all those types of things in terms of risk assessment. This is something we haven't seen a lot of in our backyard. Yes, it might be happening 40 kilometres out and it might be happening in places like the Brisbane CBD. We probably haven't put the focus on it that we should. As we get more evidence and hear more about this—and even what I'm hearing today is helping me to form a better understanding—we can make a better assessment of risk so that we can actually take on some of these things. I'm not trying to pass the buck and say I've missed the boat here, but it just hasn't been the highest priority for us. Wildlife is a very high priority for us—look at bird strikes and incidents that we have on airport versus the incidence of anything happening with a drone. It's always measured that way.

I know this issue is emerging and getting bigger. Therefore, it's a great idea to take it to that round table that we have and make them aware of these things. But the assessment of risk is probably where it starts. I will take it on board to do a better assessment of that risk at our airport and take that forward.

Senator FAWCETT: Sure. My last question for you, because I'm conscious we're out of time, is just on exposure. A lot of the focus has been on your RPT aircraft, your transport category aircraft that generally climb at a fairly rapid rate, despite Senator Sterle's concerns—about 20,000 feet in 30 kilometres. But could you take on notice to come back to us with the volume of GA and particularly helicopter traffic for your major airports and secondaries, and what percentage of the routes that they are given away from your airports are at or below 1,500 feet. Often transit routes for GA aircraft and VFR routes, helicopter routes, are in that sort of zone. I ask because there have been some studies—and CASA did one earlier this year or last year—looking at the impact of drones.

The UK has just recently released a study done by the Military Aviation Authority that shows that quite small drones—certainly well under your DJI Phantom 4, which is around 1.3 or 1.4 kilograms—have the potential to do damage to windscreens, for example, of light aircraft. Particularly for helicopters, impact with the tail rotor is catastrophic. Even with the main rotor, the tips are near transonic speed, and if you've got media helicopters, police helicopters, EMS helicopters or firefighting helicopters operating at those heights, where it is more than conceivable that these things will be operating, then that substantially increases the risk and increases the value of low-cost activities like signage through the councils et cetera if there are parks that are near the routes by which aircraft operating from your airports are transiting to and from the airport.

Mr Bourke : I'm more than happy to take that on notice and have a look at what those GA traffic volumes are. If we can get that information around that below-1,500-feet level, I am happy to provide that to the committee.

Senator FAWCETT: Thank you.

CHAIR: Thank you. Gentlemen, before I let you go, I know how Senator O'Sullivan thinks—this is the scary part. I think, personally—he speaks for himself—you were doing quite well until the last round of questioning. I'll tell you right now, Mr Bourke, that I think you let the team down. The way you were answering questions, Mr Goodwin, has been very, very good. You have accepted that there are lots of things to look at and you have been taking that up. We've heard that you're actually listening. I'll help you out, Mr Bourke: you should apply the theory of Sydney's The Daily Telegraph—that terrible rag from New South Wales—to your answers, because if there was a tragic incident, as Senator O'Sullivan said, and if there was a screaming out for a ban or a recall of these drones, I don't think many people would have copped the answer that you just gave. I'm helping you out.

Senator FAWCETT: Chair, to be fair—

CHAIR: I will let you come, Senator Fawcett. I am helping you out because, in your heart of hearts, I don't think that's the answer you wanted to give. I think you were trying to think, 'What would my members be saying?'

Senator FAWCETT: Chair, to be fair—

CHAIR: No, let Mr Bourke respond. I know Senator O'Sullivan. If he were sitting here, you wouldn't be going now. It's just that he's been knocked around by the flu, so he's a bit weak at the moment.

Mr Bourke : I appreciate that, Senator. Front of mind, my purpose of being here is to reiterate our organisation's position and our focus. So I don't want to be drawn into speculation around recalls and bans. Our focus—we aimed to drive the committee's focus in this area—is around the regulatory framework for this technology and making sure it's appropriate, and making sure we work with industries and the suppliers of these to implement technology solution that is can address this problem.

CHAIR: I understand. You've said that. I just don't want you to leave the room thinking that we're all in agreeance, you see.

Mr Goodwin : Could I add to that? I think if the risk assessed supports implementation of the changes you're suggesting, then yes, we would do it. I think that needs to be done more than maybe—I'm not suggesting everything that's said is anecdotal, but I think we need to get some serious assessment of the risk and then apply the right control to that risk.

CHAIR: Of course. We're going to have the privilege of getting a presentation from a helicopter mob down in Melbourne. They're doing it up and they're going to show us—this is Senator Fawcett's area of expertise, not mine—what can happen and what would be the potential risk if one of these two-kilo JB Hi-Fi things goes through helicopter rotor or a windscreen. Senator Fawcett, did you wish to have a crack at me?

Senator FAWCETT: I was only going to make the comment, Chair, that on what we have been calling for—for operators who are suitably trained and aware of airspace, et cetera—Mr Bourke made the comment that it would be unreasonable to recall the instrument of trade of somebody who has an appropriate licence, who has airspace awareness and is safe. I think that was quite reasonable. The contention that was put to him by Senator O'Sullivan hinged almost solely on a 40-kilometre lateral limit. If anything, vertical limits are where you actually need the geofencing. If it can't fly above 200 feet then it's going to be safe even if it's only three kilometres from the airport. Let's not get too specific and pedantic about solutions. Let's look at the broader issues.

CHAIR: I'm not going to carry on. I was thinking more about the incident at Jandakot.

Gentlemen, thank you very much for your time. We appreciate your evidence. Safe travels home.
  
Anyone else get the impression that; a) the committee is working to a strategic game plan and that; b) Senator Fawcett is all over this and working to getting industry stakeholders to understand the issues and singing from the same hymn sheet - Wink

MTF...P2 Cool
Reply
#49
DW1 Inquiry: Chester correspondence & AUSALPA Add Info.

Via the Senate Inquiry webpages it would seem that miniscule Chester has been fighting a very belated, inconsequential rear guard action in response to the committee's inquisition on drones:
Quote:[Image: Chester-1.jpg]
[Image: Chester-2.jpg]

Despite the repeated Motherhood statements and weasel word confections, note how a month later 6D's whole written demeanour and political bravado has subtly changed... Rolleyes :
Quote:[Image: Chester-3.jpg]
[Image: Chester-4.jpg]
 
Also of interest was the following 'Additional Info' tabled on behalf of AUSALPA:

Quote:
  • 4 [Image: pdf.png] Additional information provided by the Australian Airline Pilots' Association at a public hearing in Sydney on 26 June 2017.

Key Messages
  • the positive economic potential for RPAS is huge and we must embrace the technology
  • sharing airspace creates risk through a probability of collision and a range of adverse consequences
  • airspace segregation should be the risk mitigator of choice
  • if RPAS share airspace with manned aircraft, there can be no reduction in safety for manned operations
  • we do not see excessive risk coming from compliant non-excluded commercial operations
  • we do see excessive probability of collision coming from the uneducated, the unwise, the cowboys and the criminals
  • we do see adverse outcomes due to the chosen mass of excluded RPAs
  • we do not believe that the collision dynamics of bird strikes and drone strikes are the same – drone strikes are worse
  • we do not believe that the ground collision dynamics with people are related to the airborne collision dynamics with aircraft
  • the advice from Monash is not sufficiently rigorous to act as a policy basis
  • CASA has not displayed adequate caution in deciding what are excluded RPA operations
  • More research is required into aircraft drone collision dynamics to provide a proper basis for defining excluded RPA operations
  • Technology such as geo-fencing should be implemented to the maximum practical extent to aid compliance and minimise collision risk
  • We need a strong enforcement regime
  • We are committed to doing our part in shaping any new concept for RPA management strategies such as “U Space”

&..

Consultation with Pilots

AusALPA is concerned that both the Minister and now the CEO of CASA are advised by panels of vested commercial interests in aviation to the exclusion of pilot bodies.

The entrepreneurs and operators of Australia’s aviation businesses do not speak for pilots and do not deal face-to-face with the real risks every day – governments of all persuasions must seek balanced advice

The pilot associations have no more or less "industrial" interest in aviation policy development than do the operators

Advisory panels should have no industrial agenda for any participant


MTF...P2 Cool
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#50
Drone paper open for comment - Dodgy

Nearly a year after miniscule NFI 6D Chester first flagged that CASA would be carrying out a review on drones, today M&M's Dept put out the following heads up via twitter: https://twitter.com/infra_regional/statu...9397051392

Quote:The Drone Safety Regulation Discussion Paper is now open for comment until Friday 22 September 2017 – Have your say: http://bit.ly/2f1Lk1y 

& from wingnut Carmody:

Quote:Overview

Australia was one of the first countries in the world to introduce legislation governing the operation of remotely piloted aircraft (RPA), commonly referred to as drones. Part 101 of the Civil Aviation Safety Regulations 1998 (CASR) was introduced in 2002 in response to the need for an effective regulatory framework within which the development of this rapidly evolving technology could progress without compromising the safety of other airspace users and people and property on the ground.

Since that time the RPA sector in Australia, as elsewhere in the world, has experienced enormous growth, driven by advancements in technology that continue to fuel commercial and recreational consumer demand, while providing easier access to increasingly sophisticated devices at relatively low cost. As of 24 July 2017 there were 5,870 remotely piloted aircraft licence (RePL) holders and 1,106 remotely piloted aircraft operator’s certificate (ReOC) holders in Australia. The vast majority of RPA owners and operators are recreational users who require neither a RePL nor a ReOC. It is estimated that there are at least 50,000 drones being operated in Australia today, mostly for sport and recreational purposes.

Globally, aviation safety regulators are facing the same kinds of challenges: to maintain high levels of safety without unnecessarily impeding progress or unduly constraining commercial opportunities to use a technology capable of a multitude of beneficial humanitarian, economic and recreational applications. Responding to these challenges, CASA introduced important amendments to the regulations that took effect in September 2016.


Why We Are Consulting

While reducing the regulatory burden on some commercial uses of RPA, the regulations continue to require all drone operators to comply with the basic safety requirements set out in the Civil Aviation Act 1988 and the regulations. In fact, the recent amendments to Part 101 of CASR included a set of generally applicable standard operating conditions designed to enhance the high level of safety already provided under the existing rules. The Notice of Final Rule Making for these amendments is now available.

We recognise, of course, that departures from these requirements—deliberate or unintentional—can heighten those risks, and that effective action to address, and where possible to prevent, such departures is essential. To that end, CASA has continued with a major education program about the safe and compliant operation of RPAs. CASA’s drone safety awareness campaign is estimated to have reached more than a million people through our social media channels. It also includes targeted advertising through other media to explain the regulations for recreational and sub-2kg (very small) RPA users.

I recognise the ongoing need for existing aviation safety requirements to be reviewed, critically assessed and updated in response to emerging risks, new technologies, international regulatory developments, and the advice and views from other Government, industry and community stakeholders. Therefore, I look forward to your responses to this discussion paper.

I appreciate your commitment in time and effort in providing comments on these important issues, and I thank you in advance for your contributions.
 
[b]Shane Carmody
Chief Executive Officer and
Director of Aviation Safety
[/b]

&..via Business Insider:
Quote:It's your last chance to comment on the future of drones in Australia

[Image: 55fb88b2bfb7b20279508e7b911e5d62?s=32&d=mm&r=g]
Simon Thomsen [/url]
Sep 6, 2017, 1:13 PM

[url=https://edge.alluremedia.com.au/uploads/businessinsider/2016/11/drones-waves.jpg][Image: drones-waves.jpg]
Photo: Getty Images

More than 1,000 people and organisations have already commented on the Civil Aviation Safety Authority’s (CASA) discussion paper on drone safety regulation since it opened for public submissions three weeks ago.

CASA estimates there are at least 50,000 drones being used in Australia today.
The authority introduced major changes in September 2016 to cover recreational, sub-2 kg commercial and commercial drone operations, and in May this year, launched the “Can I fly there?” drone safety app, which shows where drones can and can’t be used. It has so far had more than 72,000 downloads/ unique users.

In July, CASA said there were 5,870 remotely piloted aircraft licence (RePL) holders and 1,106 remotely piloted aircraft operator’s certificate (ReOC) holders in Australia, alongside the amateur pilots who don’t need a licence.

The discussion paper covers five key issues: drone registration; training and education of drone operators; geo-fencing; counter drone technology; and future approaches to drone aviation safety regulation.

Submissions are open until September 22.

The discussion paper and link for feedback are here.

Read more at https://www.businessinsider.com.au/its-y...BpjLgls.99
MTF...P2 Tongue
Reply
#51
Barry O again calls for ban on recreational drones - Confused

Via the SMH:
Quote:Queensland senator Barry O'Sullivan calls for ban on drones following committee

10 September 2017 - 12:00am
By Andrew Brown

A Coalition senator has called for a ban on the use of unlicensed drones following an appearance at a senate committee on their use.

Queensland senator Barry O'Sullivan is advocating for a recall on all drones operating without a commercial license until regulations preventing further mid-air incidents are brought in.
[Image: c2e29743edf0dbaa823e2a13744839d05819fe95]
Senator Barry O'Sullivan is calling for a ban on all non-commercial drones.
Photo:Alex Ellinghausen

The senate committee, examining regulations surrounding the use of drones in Australia, held its last public hearing in Canberra in late August.

"If there's a rag doll at Kmart that has a button come off and a child could choke as a result, if one child is at risk, every one of them is recalled and taken off the shelf," he said.

[Image: 10ad89e7c5d9d54bf8e662739ffd174957c3da30]
Drone Flight Academy president Jeff Cotter is not supportive of the proposed ban on drone regulation.

"Yet here we have drones in a box that can impact on passenger aircraft, and we're paralysed in efforts to bring it to a halt.

"If I were king for a day, every drone in this nation, other than the ones that are commercially licensed, would join the rag dolls in the same room."

The final public hearing of the committee heard testimony from members of Airservices Australia, the Australian Transport Safety Bureau and the Civil Aviation Safety Authority.
The committee heard there were around 180 near misses between drones and other aircraft last year.

Senator O'Sullivan said those who fly drones should be subjected to similar levels of aviation training as other pilots, to ensure no near misses happen.

"I don't place any different value on one aircraft over another, whether it's manned or unmanned. As far as I'm concerned they're the same," he said.

"But one airborne craft is piloted by people who are pre-eminently trained in all sort of aviation principles and aircraft management, compared to the other craft that's piloted by a 15-year-old that just got a drone out of a box and has never been in control of any airborne craft that's sharing the same space."

Jeff Cotter is the director of the Drone Flight Academy in Canberra, which runs courses on building drones as well as training people how to fly them responsibly.

He said he can understand the senator's stance but said calling for a total ban now was "too little, too late".

"One of the big issues with drones is that it's not so much the fault of the people buying them, but the vendors," he said.

"People sell them as toys, and it's reasonable to forgive the customers for not realising that there are restrictions around their use."

CASA regulations prevent drone users from flying in populous areas, within 30 metres of people, no higher than 120 metres and at least 5.5 kilometres away from airfields.

Mr Cotter said while a total ban on drones may not work, he said a ban on selling them at retail stores was one solution to prevent mid-air incidents.

"It's a matter of better education and preventing them being sold in toy shops," he said.
"Drones being self-regulated would be a way to go, and you can have some kind of national body made up of enthusiasts and you have to be a member of a club and can only fly at registered sites."

With drones becoming more popular, Mr O'Sullivan said urgent action was required in order to make Australian airspaces safer.

There's an estimated 50,000 drones in Australia with companies such as Dominos and Australia Post exploring options of using drones for deliveries.

"All of the issues with drones were foreseeable and the challenges were predictable, and we should have stopped the sales of airborne devices that have any potential to impact on air safety," he said.
Given the last Senate Inquiry hearing was nearly two weeks ago I do wonder about the timing of Senator Barry O's announcement... Huh
Maybe it was timed for maximum impact for the media in attendance at the National's Federal conference in Can'tberra? Either way it would've been a bit embarrassing for our Greatest Aviation Disaster, miniscule NFI 6D Chester... Blush
From the Senate Inquiry Submissions page I note there has been an additional submission published - 89 Mr John Reidy-Crofts (PDF 24 KB) - which IMO is worthy of reproduction (in part):
      
Quote:In a recent email advice issued by Mark Lewis, Recreational RPAS Inspector, RPAS National Operations CASA/Aviation Group and directed to Michael Severn of Perth Drone Shop, he advised the following:

“In G Class airspace, you can fly a recreational RPAS/Model aircraft (subpart G of CASR 101) as high as you want, as long as you satisfy the criteria for being able to continuously see, orient and navigate the aircraft with your own eyes. As G Class airspace is uncontrolled airspace, you fly to the VFR rules the same as every other airspace user would. As the primary method of deconfliction in uncontrolled airspace for VFR flights (regardless of manned or unmanned) is see and avoid, this also extends to recreational RPA/model aircraft to ensure appropriate separation in maintained. This system has been in effect since modeling started in Australia, well over 40 years ago.”

The above advice is of concern and somewhat misleading. The question in my mind is how many recreational ‘excluded’ users of an RPA would be aware of ‘VFR’ and terms such as ‘deconfliction’ and ‘uncontrolled air space’. Until I read the CASA Advisory Circular, and made further enquiries by gaining web site access to how airspace is managed in Australia, I was not aware of what these terms meant.

This is an area that in my opinion requires further investigation leading to regulation for ALL remotely piloted aircraft systems.

I hold serious concern that under the current CASA Licensing and Operational rules for RPAS, a child or person of unsound mind, can operate a small (excluded) RPA without any pre-requite training or license requirements. I have also concerns over adults who may be of sound mind but have no understanding of VFR or other terms as mentioned above.

My concern can be best explained in a recent incident that I experienced whilst test flying my Phantom on an approved recreational reserve here in Perth uncontrolled air space. I had just landed my aircraft when I heard a high-pitched sound of an approaching Phantom. It was flying very fast at a low altitude only a few feet above head height. It missed me by some 20 meters and crashed into a nearby stand of trees. I investigated the crash site and found that two young teenage girls had operated the aircraft. When I questioned them as to what were they doing, they said they were trying to see how fast the Phantom could fly across country! They did not respond to my question ‘did they understand or know the rules for flying a Phantom’. Being young teenage girls, I did not pursue my discussion any further and walked away.

On another occasion whilst flying at this same reserve, I observed a middle aged male flying a Mavic Pro RPA. He had the aircraft positioned directly above a small family group who were taking family group photographs. The aircraft would have been well under 30 m in altitude and he was taking photos of the group who were taking photos. I approached this man and enquired was he aware of the rules and that in my opinion he was flying dangerously. He was not impressed with my comments and I thought it a better course of action for me to walk away. I am sure that these two incidences are only the tip of the iceberg!

I read recently in the West Australian newspaper that Senator Pauline Hanson had been observed flying a ‘drone’ from her hotel balcony in Queensland. Her remarks as printed were not appropriate for a Senator and highlight the need for regulation.

I have made enquiries with most Perth Metropolitan local councils and Regional councils about that council’s policy in respect to the flying of RPA’s within its boundaries. The response was very mixed and uncoordinated with most local My immediate concern is that in the eye of the public, they may consider that small RPA’s of 100g-2kg as being a ‘toy’, and this is far from the reality. My DJI Phantom 4 Pro weighs in at 1.388 kg and has a Max Flight Speed S 20m/s, a flight distance including altitude of 5000m. The speed whilst in sport mode can reach a speed of 70 kph and that in uncontrolled situations is highly dangerous. Consider for a moment the story I told (above) of the two young teenage girls who flew their Phantom at top speed and were not that far away from myself. If that aircraft had hit me in the head at say 70 kph, I don’t hold out much hope of surviving the impact!

Another concern that I wish to raise is relating to emergency helicopters operating on G class airspace at low altitudes and the serious risk a small RPA could do if it impacted with that aircraft. A RPA with a weight under 2kg can be likened to a flying house brick propelled at 70 kph. I hope that this imagery is not overlooked.authorities that I contacted stating that they had no policy for this activity.

There needs to be in my opinion, a standard policy that relates to ALL local government councils that is integrated with CASA Rules and Regulations. Being a past Chief Executive Officer of a several rural/regional local authorities and large metropolitan local authority, I have a few ideas as to how this could be achieved, however that is not the purpose of this submission.

Choccy frog for JOHN REIDY-CROFTS... Wink


MTF...P2 Tongue
Reply
#52
Anyone care to Tango?

Good post P2. I need to preface this with ‘reason’ and consideration; it is highly unlikely, bordering on the improbable. However, it is possible and serves as an extreme case of ‘if it can go wrong – it will’. Murphy’s law always valid - 24/7.

We have a friend – comrade in arms who lives in the Sydney inner city suburb of Paddington. Pleasant spot, if densely populated.  To the East at about 200 meters is a university; across the road from that, at about 300 meters is the Victoria barracks. Now the barracks get a fair amount of ‘chopper’ traffic, which, for some strange reason seems to prefer to descend and approach the barracks pad over the top of a densely populated area and the Uni. The noise is at industrial sound protection levels, shakes the windows and rattles the doors. Why they feel this is acceptable is beyond my comprehension – when about 400 meters to the south of the barracks, there are ‘paddocks’ – big ones, at least four football fields worth, over which they could descend and approach without annoying the crap out of anyone. That said it is a side issue (just me barking).

If you continue South from the barracks (300 meters) – there are the football stadiums, the SCG and the RAS showground. These attract ‘big’ crowds when there is an event on and helicopters. They also attract ‘drones’ – not many I’ll warrant, but we counted five airborne at the last footy match. The drones were in as much danger from each other as the choppers were; but random, impulse flight paths and sneak looks over the walls at the match made for interesting, heart stopping watching.

Balance of probability – what chance one of those drones could clip one of the choppers; what chance one of those drones could clip a chopper in a vulnerable spot? I tried to work out the odds – they are long – but; even so, why take the remote chance of it happening. Nightmare – densely populated area, big crowds, low flying, slow or hovering choppers all mixed in with unregulated, unlicensed, random flight path  drone traffic.

I’m with Barry O’ Braces. A packet of dodgy sausages in a  super market (or a rag-doll) prompts immediate, strong actions – in the name of public safety.

It is no good relying on ‘the regulator’ to sort it out, they can’t do high speed, high value, sensible regulation, not even after 30 years of practice. The minister is about as much use as three men away from home and the local councils (bless ‘em) can’t do too much. If we had a switched on regulator – a six month moratorium on unlicensed operating could serve; but we can forget that. Which only leaves one option – a total ban, on the unlicensed - until a plan, something like notions presented by John Reidy-Crofts, can be instituted and supported. Good submission that one…Choc frog job.

"Another concern that I wish to raise is relating to emergency helicopters operating on G class airspace at low altitudes and the serious risk a small RPA could do if it impacted with that aircraft. A RPA with a weight under 2kg can be likened to a flying house brick propelled at 70 kph. I hope that this imagery is not overlooked.authorities that I contacted stating that they had no policy for this activity."

"There needs to be in my opinion, a standard policy that relates to ALL local government councils that is integrated with CASA Rules and Regulations. Being a past Chief Executive Officer of a several rural/regional local authorities and large metropolitan local authority, I have a few ideas as to how this could be achieved, however that is not the purpose of this submission."

Meanwhile – I will, humbly, remind you of Newton’s second law F=ma. Two Kg at 20 Kph =? Then add that to a Bell 206 at 1400 Kg @ 40 Kph = ? I’ll let you do the math – but it’s a considerable amount of energy, the closer they are to each other, the risks increase exponentially. It takes two to Tango.

Toot – toot.
Reply
#53
CASA & ASA answers to QON from 29 August hearing:

Quote:2 [Image: pdf.png] Answers to questions taken on notice by Airservices Australia at a public hearing in Canberra on 29 August 2017. Received on 8 September 2017.
3 [Image: pdf.png] Answers to questions taken on notice by CASA at a public hearing in Canberra on 29 August 2017. Received on 14 September 2017.



Quote:
CASA’s Responses to RRAT Committee’s Questions on Notice
RPAS Inquiry Hearing on 29 August 2017

Page: 29
CHAIR: Can you tell me about the successful prosecution in Townsville? I just want to know how that came about, what was the result? It is not going to make a difference to the report that we write, but it would be interesting to know.

Dr Aleck: My understanding is that matter was initiated under state legislation. I'm not quite sure how far it has progressed. It was not a matter that CASA was dealing with directly, so we will find out what the outcome is. I also understand that because the individual involved was under 18, it may be approached somewhat differently. The whole question of whether matters like this can, should and ought more effectively be dealt with under state legislation is a bit fraught but we are pursuing that one. As soon as we get more information, I'm happy to send it.

Answer:
CASA is aware of the operation of a drone over the Townsville 400 Supercars event on 18 July 2017, however as this incident was dealt with by the Queensland Police Service under Section 29 of the Major Events Act 2014 and involved a person under the age of 18 years old, CASA is not in a position to be able to respond with details.

Page: 29
CHAIR: On notice, could you forward to me any information about flying drones around Parliament House, and what conditions there are before that is permitted or not permitted?

Mr Carmody: Certainly, Senator.

Answer:
Different rules apply to RPA of a particular size/weight depending on whether the RPA is being operated exclusively for sport or recreational purposes, or for commercial purposes, and subject to certain approvals and authorisations which may be given in respect of particular operations. The following general advice is provided, however it is expected that all aspects of RPAS regulations will be reviewed after the Discussion Paper process and the upcoming Post Implementation Review.

A ‘sport or recreational’ operator, operating under the categories of micro or very small or as a model aircraft are encouraged to adhere to the standard operating conditions including flying only by day with the RPAS remaining within sight, not fly within 30m of persons or over a populous area where if the RPAS was to fail, it cannot clear the area or fly above 400ft in controlled airspace. Operations under these categories are also not restricted by location.

A ‘commercial operator’, operating as an excluded RPA must adhere to the standard operating conditions provided for in in Civil Aviation Safety Regulation 101.238. However, aspects of their operations may be restricted further in certain locations.
There is currently no designated airspace for prohibited, restricted or danger areas (as defined in the Airspace Regulations 2007) over or in the vicinity of Parliament House.

Page 30:
Senator FAWCETT: You have. You'll have to take some lessons. CASA has previously expressed some concern about the maturity of technology such as geofencing. I've actually just been going through your submission again, and I thought you'd mentioned something in here that some of those technologies could potentially introduce risks. But we heard a comment before about DJI as an OEM—and I haven't been able to clarify whether this is their intent or whether this is what they are doing now—and that their product off the shelf is limited to a 100-foot bubble around the operator. If that concept is viable and mature enough that an OEM is doing that, why would we not look at a whole-of-government approach where we limited imports and sales to only OEMs that were prepared to take that approach so that we completely avoid the example of the Christmas present with an ill-informed operator who happens to fly it under a helicopter route or near an airport? And if it is true that DJI have put this in place, then it says that it's mature enough that it's commercially viable, therefore it's probably reliable enough that we can actually start limiting the 90 per cent of the unintentional incidents due to lack of knowledge. Why would we not take that as a key approach to the government?

Mr Carmody:
Firstly, I'm not sure that it's true. One of my colleagues might know, as we stay as closely as we can to these sorts of developments. If geofencing—and I'll call it 'geofencing' in that context—or limiting a bubble around a drone is technically feasible, does mature and does become that way, that is certainly one of the methods that you could use to control drones and manage some elements of the risk. I'm not certain that it's as mature as advertised as yet. They're a very big marketer of drones—the biggest in the world. They're obviously trying to stay the biggest in the world, or get bigger. I'm not sure how it actually interacts with other technologies as well. So, I think that the jury is out. It sounds logical and sensible, and we will certainly consider it. But in terms of whether it is there yet, I'm not sure.

Senator FAWCETT: Could you undertake to have one of your people contact them, and OEM, and ascertain and come back to the committee with a view on that.

Mr Carmody: Certainly.

Senator FAWCETT: Because, if it's technically feasible and we limit the market to only manufacturers who meet that technical bar, as sure as apples come from trees, other manufacturers will reach that bar if they want to sell into the market. That then gives us a starting point where, over five years, with degrading batteries and all the rest of it, the old fleet will disappear and we'll be in a much better space for those 49,000 recreational users to encourage, through capability, their requirement to increase their level of knowledge before their machine becomes more capable.

Mr Carmody: We certainly will, Senator. We'll certainly take it on notice. We'll ask the question. I was hopeful we might even have the answer, but I assume we don't. We'll ask the question and come back to the committee and let you know what we find. I think, conceptually, in isolation, it sounds like a very positive outcome. I would just like to see how it fits.

Answer:
CASA has had preliminary discussions with a senior DJI representative regarding the potential for DJI to implement the DJI ‘Geo System’ in Australia. Discussions have also been held with Airservices Australia regarding the datasets that might be required to implement their Geo System in Australia. Further discussions will be held during October 2017 on this matter.

Details about the ‘Geo System’ is available at http://www.dji.com/flysafe/geo-system

Page 32
CHAIR: Alright. We know that on the web you can go to one of the senators—I will say it, Senator Pauline Hanson, the leader of One Nation, has on her website film of Parliament House on a cloudy day from a drone, and then there was a rugby match down here between the pollies who support Queensland and the pollies who support New South Wales. I'm raising with you now, through the Hansard, that I have a real concern. You see, I have to be consistent. It might be a bit of a dribble, but I have to get this out. We cannot have one set of rules for politicians and sets of rules for other Australians, because we are no different. In fact, we should be upholding the rule. How do I put a complaint to CASA that I would like to have this investigated? How do I do that? Do I have to put a letter and get run around by the Privacy Act? What will happen?

Mr Carmody: We will take that request and have it investigated. I was under the impression that we might have already. I'd like to look at it to see whether, in fact, we have, because it was a public event—well, a publicised event, dare I say. I will take it as a formal complaint and request for investigation.

Answer:
This matter is still under investigation by CASA and a response will be provided to the Committee once finalised.
MTF...P2 Tongue
Reply
#54
DW1 update: 21 Sept '17- Wink

CASA extend period for accepting review submissions, via Oz Aviation:

Quote:CASA extends deadline for submissions to drone review
September 20, 2017 by australianaviation.com.au
[Image: DJI-drone-1.jpg]
Australia’s Civil Aviation Safety Authority (CASA) given interested parties another week to get their submissions in to its review into commercial and recreational operations of remotely piloted aircraft systems (RPAS), or drones.

The deadline for public comment to its discussion paper has been pushed back to Friday, September 29, CASA said in a statement on its website. It was previously September 22.
“In response to requests from the aviation community, we’ve extended the deadline for feedback on our drone safety review discussion paper,” CASA said on Wednesday.

CASA opened submissions for its review into commercial and recreational operations of remotely piloted aircraft systems (RPAS), or drones in August, following the terms of reference being set out in June.

In a discussion paper, CASA noted there were about 50,000 drones used in Australia currently, mostly for sport and recreational purposes.

Further, it said the RPA sector had achieved enormous growth globally in recent times, as advancements in drone technology lifted commercial and recreational consumer demand and the cost of these aircraft continued to come down.

Along with other aviation regulators around the world, CASA said it too faced the task of maintaining high levels of safety without “unduly constraining commercial opportunities to use a technology capable of a multitude of beneficial humanitarian, economic and recreational applications”.

The terms of reference for the review showed CASA would consider among other matters the safety benefits and cost effectiveness of introducing mandatory registration, education and training for all RPAS operators, as well as the deployment of geofencing capabilities for these aircraft.

The review also aimed to look at the “effectiveness of CASA’s operating model with respect to the regulation of RPAS” amid what is a growing industry.

The discussion paper can be read in full on the CASA website.

CASA’s review is separate to Federal Parliament’s look at the rules around the use of drones, which is being conducted by the Senate Rural and Regional Affairs and Transport Committee.

The aviation safety regulator published a video on its “Can I Fly There?” app that was launched in May 2017 on its YouTube channel.

Next via insurancelawtomorrow.com :

Quote:Game of Drones – what does the rise of the drone mean for insurers?
[Image: 20157.thumbnail.jpg]By Jodie Odell on September 18, 2017 Posted in Industry news

Unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs), remotely piloted aircraft (RPAs) or drones – however you choose to refer to them, are big business. They’re being used increasingly in the commercial world – from mining and agriculture, to tourism, sports and entertainment. But that’s not all.

Your ten year old niece or nephew probably has one which they operate with gusto, while family members glance nervously skywards. Going to a wedding? Chances are a drone will be overhead filming, so the happy couple can spend the first few weeks of married life editing the footage into a jaunty video. And then there are the unbridled aviation enthusiasts for whom a drone is simply the latest must have in their aeronautical armoury.

So, we know that drones are out there but with so many different types of use and user, how are they regulated? What are the liability risks? And how can insurers meet these?

The regulation

Australia has been at the forefront of drone regulation worldwide. In 2002, we became the first country to regulate the use of drones. And in September 2016, new regulations came into effect so that certain drones can be operated without licences. This allows businesses to use drones in their everyday operations on their own property, without costly and time consuming certifications.

People and organisations wanting to fly recreational or commercial drones with a maximum take-off weight of less than 2kg no longer need to apply for a certificate and licence from the Civil Aviation Safety Authority (CASA). This avoids about $1400 in regulatory fees, as well as the need to develop manuals and other documentation. There are, however, restrictions such as only flying during the day and in line of sight, and no flying over populous areas such as beaches, parks and sporting ovals. So, take your niece or nephew to an empty airfield and not the local park.

A drone with a gross weight of at least 2kg but less than 25kg can also be operated without a remote pilot licence or an RPA operator’s certificate, where no remuneration is received for its use.  Again, there are caveats. A medium drone (at least 25kg but not over 150kg) may be operated in the same circumstances although the operator must hold a remote pilot’s licence.

A risky business

While less red tape creates an exciting opportunity for businesses to exploit drone technology and explore its uses, some are not aware of the strict legal and regulatory implications if something goes awry. The risk remains considerable, even for small drones, and the heavier the drone the greater the potential liability.

More obvious risks include flying into power lines, or crashing and damaging property or people.  However, flying drones can raise issues in many areas of law including cyber-security, crime, product liability, employee safety, trespass and privacy.  We are just starting to appreciate the implications of some of these. For example:
  • the connection between the pilot on the ground and the drone in the air relies on hardware and software which are vulnerable to cyber-threats. Flight controls can be hacked to hijack or infect a drone remotely. This could cause devastating consequences in terms of damage to drones, people and property as well as business interruption for the drone operator;
  • the intersection of privacy law and drone operations is new and not fully tested. Privacy laws generally prohibit the collection and use of personal information without a person’s consent. If a drone will capture images with a camera, then circumstances may arise where a third party will claim a breach of privacy on the basis that unlawful surveillance is being conducted; and
  • flying a drone over another person’s property without permission may constitute a trespass.
Each of these risks, and more, needs to be managed by any business looking to use drones.

Insure my drone

As is typical with new, fast moving technologies, with myriad risks also comes opportunity. For insurers, this not only includes the use of drones in their own businesses to drive efficiencies (for example, using drones to provide early surveillance footage after a natural disaster to expedite claims management), but also diversification of their portfolios to provide products designed to help businesses manage drone related risks.

In addition to insurers expanding existing public liability policies to include drone use in normal business activities, specific third party liability and drone hull policies are now available. While this has arguably met the immediate and most obvious risks associated with private, and relatively modest, commercial drone operation, the use of commercial drones will almost certainly continue its upward trajectory.

The demand for more and increasingly sophisticated and varied insurance products will surely follow. As they gain a greater understanding of the many potential liabilities facing drone operators, insurers will be well positioned to make the most of this developing technology.

Finally from science boffin publication PHYS.ORG on a research project by New Virginia Tech, that looks at the risks involved with human v drone impacts... Wink

Quote:Study suggests risks vary widely in drone-human impacts
September 19, 2017

[Image: landmarkstud.jpg]
Researchers collect drone impact data at an athletics facility on Virginia Tech's Blacksburg campus under the direction of the Virginia Tech Mid-Atlantic Aviation Partnership and the Institute for Critical Technology and Applied Science. Credit: Virginia Tech

New Virginia Tech research suggests there's wide variation in the risk that unmanned aircraft pose to people on the ground.

Many of the most promising applications for these aircraft—including package delivery, public safety, and traffic management—entail flights over people and raise the possibility, however unlikely, of an impact between the aircraft and a human.

So before unmanned aircraft systems—also known as UAS or drones—can be utilized efficiently by the many industries eager to employ them, policymakers need to understand what injuries these aircraft could potentially cause and what design features, operational limitations, and regulations could help prevent them.

Without robust experimental data on these topics, Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) regulations currently prohibit UAS operations over people. (Operators can apply for a waiver, but the FAA has granted only three, all extremely limited in scope.)

Virginia Tech's world-renowned injury biomechanics group and its FAA-approved UAS test site teamed up to fill that gap and have just released the first peer-reviewed academic study to offer quantitative data on injury risk associated with potential drone-human collisions.

The research, published in the Annals of Biomedical Engineering, assessed head and neck injury risk from three small commercially available aircraft in a variety of impact scenarios. It represents a critical step toward developing UAS safety standards that can minimize the risk of catastrophic or fatal injury from operations over people.

The injury biomechanics team is led by Steven Rowson, an assistant professor of biomedical engineering and mechanics in the College of Engineering, and Stefan Duma, the Harry Wyatt Professor of Engineering and interim director of the Institute for Critical Technology and Applied Science.

The group's wide-ranging experience evaluating injury risk includes extensive work in the automotive and sports industries—both areas in which evidence-based safety standards have been effective at reducing catastrophic and fatal injuries.

The Virginia Tech Mid-Atlantic Aviation Partnership, which runs the UAS test site, helped design and conduct the experiments.

The team used three commercially available aircraft, with masses ranging from 1.2 kilograms to 11 kilograms; the aircraft impacted a test dummy whose head and neck contained sensors to measure acceleration and force.

In one set of tests, the aircraft were flown into the dummy at full speed; in another, aircraft were dropped directly onto the dummy's head in different orientations.

The forces produced by these impacts were evaluated relative to standard benchmarks for forces likely to cause potentially severe or life-threatening injuries—skull fractures, for example.

In general, the injury risk increased with aircraft mass. For example, in drop tests with the smallest drone, the risk of severe neck injury was less than 10 percent; for the largest aircraft, the median risk rose to 70 percent.

These results suggest that a subset of small drones may already be safe to operate over people. Other aircraft, however, present significant injury risk, even those well within mass and speed limits outlined in the FAA's Part 107 guidelines for commercial operations by small UAS.

The data also shows that despite greater impact speeds in the live flight tests, the drop tests—which facilitated more direct contact between the aircraft center of mass and the dummy's head—tended to result in more severe hits. That reflects a common thread in the numbers: The nature of the impact had a significant influence on the resulting injury probability.

"There's a wide range of risk," Rowson said. "In some instances it was low, and in some instances it was high, and there are lessons we can take away from that to reduce injury risk in a deliberate way through product design."

During impacts in which the aircraft was deflected away from the body—by a protruding rotor arm, for example—the force and resulting injury risk were reduced. Aircraft features specifically designed to redirect its center of mass in the event of an impact could make severe injuries less likely.

The data showed that injury risk was also reduced when the aircraft deformed upon impact or when pieces broke off. Those deformations and fractures absorb some of the energy of the crash and offer another route for risk mitigation.

"If you reduce the energy that's able to be transferred to be head, you reduce the injury risk," said Eamon Campolettano, a doctoral student from Hicksville, New York, and the paper's first author. "The overarching goal for manufacturers should be to limit energy transfer."

The fact that some of the trials in the study yielded risk values greater than 50 percent highlights the potential for UAS-human impacts to lead to severe injuries. The significant variation in the data points to the need for comprehensive testing, especially considering the range of shapes, sizes, and materials in the commercial UAS market.

"What happens when the arm strikes first, or the center of mass?" asked Campolettano.

"What we set out to do with this study was to explore some of the many different ways drones and people can interact, and then use that baseline to choose different impact orientations for future studies."

The team is using these initial results to guide the development of a broader set of controlled experiments in a laboratory environment, which will represent a necessary foundation for future regulations on UAS operations over people.

"There's a tremendous demand for more research in this area," said Mark Blanks, the director of the Virginia Tech Mid-Atlantic Aviation Partnership. "The first step was to establish a baseline for how to perform these tests. Now we're doing a lot of work with individual companies, looking at specific airframes and potential mitigations."

"The big question right now is, what is the acceptable level of safety?" said Blanks, who also chairs an industry standards subcommittee developing recommendations for safe operations over people. "How much proof does the FAA need before they say, 'Yes, that's okay'? Once those standards are in place, we're going to see huge expansion in the industry."

Read more at: https://phys.org/news/2017-09-vary-widel...s.html#jCp 

MTF...P2 Tongue
Reply
#55
(09-21-2017, 10:36 AM)Peetwo Wrote: CASA extend period for accepting review submissions, via Oz Aviation:

Quote:CASA extends deadline for submissions to drone review
September 20, 2017 by australianaviation.com.au
[Image: DJI-drone-1.jpg]
Australia’s Civil Aviation Safety Authority (CASA) given interested parties another week to get their submissions in to its review into commercial and recreational operations of remotely piloted aircraft systems (RPAS), or drones.

The deadline for public comment to its discussion paper has been pushed back to Friday, September 29, CASA said in a statement on its website. It was previously September 22.
“In response to requests from the aviation community, we’ve extended the deadline for feedback on our drone safety review discussion paper,” CASA said on Wednesday.

CASA opened submissions for its review into commercial and recreational operations of remotely piloted aircraft systems (RPAS), or drones in August, following the terms of reference being set out in June.

In a discussion paper, CASA noted there were about 50,000 drones used in Australia currently, mostly for sport and recreational purposes.

Further, it said the RPA sector had achieved enormous growth globally in recent times, as advancements in drone technology lifted commercial and recreational consumer demand and the cost of these aircraft continued to come down.

Along with other aviation regulators around the world, CASA said it too faced the task of maintaining high levels of safety without “unduly constraining commercial opportunities to use a technology capable of a multitude of beneficial humanitarian, economic and recreational applications”.

The terms of reference for the review showed CASA would consider among other matters the safety benefits and cost effectiveness of introducing mandatory registration, education and training for all RPAS operators, as well as the deployment of geofencing capabilities for these aircraft.

The review also aimed to look at the “effectiveness of CASA’s operating model with respect to the regulation of RPAS” amid what is a growing industry.

The discussion paper can be read in full on the CASA website.

CASA’s review is separate to Federal Parliament’s look at the rules around the use of drones, which is being conducted by the Senate Rural and Regional Affairs and Transport Committee.

The aviation safety regulator published a video on its “Can I Fly There?” app that was launched in May 2017 on its YouTube channel.

Next via insurancelawtomorrow.com :

Quote:Game of Drones – what does the rise of the drone mean for insurers?
[Image: 20157.thumbnail.jpg]By Jodie Odell on September 18, 2017 Posted in Industry news

Unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs), remotely piloted aircraft (RPAs) or drones – however you choose to refer to them, are big business. They’re being used increasingly in the commercial world – from mining and agriculture, to tourism, sports and entertainment. But that’s not all.

Your ten year old niece or nephew probably has one which they operate with gusto, while family members glance nervously skywards. Going to a wedding? Chances are a drone will be overhead filming, so the happy couple can spend the first few weeks of married life editing the footage into a jaunty video. And then there are the unbridled aviation enthusiasts for whom a drone is simply the latest must have in their aeronautical armoury.

So, we know that drones are out there but with so many different types of use and user, how are they regulated? What are the liability risks? And how can insurers meet these?

The regulation

Australia has been at the forefront of drone regulation worldwide. In 2002, we became the first country to regulate the use of drones. And in September 2016, new regulations came into effect so that certain drones can be operated without licences. This allows businesses to use drones in their everyday operations on their own property, without costly and time consuming certifications.

People and organisations wanting to fly recreational or commercial drones with a maximum take-off weight of less than 2kg no longer need to apply for a certificate and licence from the Civil Aviation Safety Authority (CASA). This avoids about $1400 in regulatory fees, as well as the need to develop manuals and other documentation. There are, however, restrictions such as only flying during the day and in line of sight, and no flying over populous areas such as beaches, parks and sporting ovals. So, take your niece or nephew to an empty airfield and not the local park.

A drone with a gross weight of at least 2kg but less than 25kg can also be operated without a remote pilot licence or an RPA operator’s certificate, where no remuneration is received for its use.  Again, there are caveats. A medium drone (at least 25kg but not over 150kg) may be operated in the same circumstances although the operator must hold a remote pilot’s licence.

A risky business

While less red tape creates an exciting opportunity for businesses to exploit drone technology and explore its uses, some are not aware of the strict legal and regulatory implications if something goes awry. The risk remains considerable, even for small drones, and the heavier the drone the greater the potential liability.

More obvious risks include flying into power lines, or crashing and damaging property or people.  However, flying drones can raise issues in many areas of law including cyber-security, crime, product liability, employee safety, trespass and privacy.  We are just starting to appreciate the implications of some of these. For example:
  • the connection between the pilot on the ground and the drone in the air relies on hardware and software which are vulnerable to cyber-threats. Flight controls can be hacked to hijack or infect a drone remotely. This could cause devastating consequences in terms of damage to drones, people and property as well as business interruption for the drone operator;
  • the intersection of privacy law and drone operations is new and not fully tested. Privacy laws generally prohibit the collection and use of personal information without a person’s consent. If a drone will capture images with a camera, then circumstances may arise where a third party will claim a breach of privacy on the basis that unlawful surveillance is being conducted; and
  • flying a drone over another person’s property without permission may constitute a trespass.
Each of these risks, and more, needs to be managed by any business looking to use drones.

Insure my drone

As is typical with new, fast moving technologies, with myriad risks also comes opportunity. For insurers, this not only includes the use of drones in their own businesses to drive efficiencies (for example, using drones to provide early surveillance footage after a natural disaster to expedite claims management), but also diversification of their portfolios to provide products designed to help businesses manage drone related risks.

In addition to insurers expanding existing public liability policies to include drone use in normal business activities, specific third party liability and drone hull policies are now available. While this has arguably met the immediate and most obvious risks associated with private, and relatively modest, commercial drone operation, the use of commercial drones will almost certainly continue its upward trajectory.

The demand for more and increasingly sophisticated and varied insurance products will surely follow. As they gain a greater understanding of the many potential liabilities facing drone operators, insurers will be well positioned to make the most of this developing technology.

Finally from science boffin publication PHYS.ORG on a research project by New Virginia Tech, that looks at the risks involved with human v drone impacts... Wink

Quote:Study suggests risks vary widely in drone-human impacts
September 19, 2017

[Image: landmarkstud.jpg]
Researchers collect drone impact data at an athletics facility on Virginia Tech's Blacksburg campus under the direction of the Virginia Tech Mid-Atlantic Aviation Partnership and the Institute for Critical Technology and Applied Science. Credit: Virginia Tech

New Virginia Tech research suggests there's wide variation in the risk that unmanned aircraft pose to people on the ground.

Many of the most promising applications for these aircraft—including package delivery, public safety, and traffic management—entail flights over people and raise the possibility, however unlikely, of an impact between the aircraft and a human.

So before unmanned aircraft systems—also known as UAS or drones—can be utilized efficiently by the many industries eager to employ them, policymakers need to understand what injuries these aircraft could potentially cause and what design features, operational limitations, and regulations could help prevent them.

Without robust experimental data on these topics, Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) regulations currently prohibit UAS operations over people. (Operators can apply for a waiver, but the FAA has granted only three, all extremely limited in scope.)

Virginia Tech's world-renowned injury biomechanics group and its FAA-approved UAS test site teamed up to fill that gap and have just released the first peer-reviewed academic study to offer quantitative data on injury risk associated with potential drone-human collisions.

The research, published in the Annals of Biomedical Engineering, assessed head and neck injury risk from three small commercially available aircraft in a variety of impact scenarios. It represents a critical step toward developing UAS safety standards that can minimize the risk of catastrophic or fatal injury from operations over people.

The injury biomechanics team is led by Steven Rowson, an assistant professor of biomedical engineering and mechanics in the College of Engineering, and Stefan Duma, the Harry Wyatt Professor of Engineering and interim director of the Institute for Critical Technology and Applied Science.

The group's wide-ranging experience evaluating injury risk includes extensive work in the automotive and sports industries—both areas in which evidence-based safety standards have been effective at reducing catastrophic and fatal injuries.

The Virginia Tech Mid-Atlantic Aviation Partnership, which runs the UAS test site, helped design and conduct the experiments.

The team used three commercially available aircraft, with masses ranging from 1.2 kilograms to 11 kilograms; the aircraft impacted a test dummy whose head and neck contained sensors to measure acceleration and force.

In one set of tests, the aircraft were flown into the dummy at full speed; in another, aircraft were dropped directly onto the dummy's head in different orientations.

The forces produced by these impacts were evaluated relative to standard benchmarks for forces likely to cause potentially severe or life-threatening injuries—skull fractures, for example.

In general, the injury risk increased with aircraft mass. For example, in drop tests with the smallest drone, the risk of severe neck injury was less than 10 percent; for the largest aircraft, the median risk rose to 70 percent.

These results suggest that a subset of small drones may already be safe to operate over people. Other aircraft, however, present significant injury risk, even those well within mass and speed limits outlined in the FAA's Part 107 guidelines for commercial operations by small UAS.

The data also shows that despite greater impact speeds in the live flight tests, the drop tests—which facilitated more direct contact between the aircraft center of mass and the dummy's head—tended to result in more severe hits. That reflects a common thread in the numbers: The nature of the impact had a significant influence on the resulting injury probability.

"There's a wide range of risk," Rowson said. "In some instances it was low, and in some instances it was high, and there are lessons we can take away from that to reduce injury risk in a deliberate way through product design."

During impacts in which the aircraft was deflected away from the body—by a protruding rotor arm, for example—the force and resulting injury risk were reduced. Aircraft features specifically designed to redirect its center of mass in the event of an impact could make severe injuries less likely.

The data showed that injury risk was also reduced when the aircraft deformed upon impact or when pieces broke off. Those deformations and fractures absorb some of the energy of the crash and offer another route for risk mitigation.

"If you reduce the energy that's able to be transferred to be head, you reduce the injury risk," said Eamon Campolettano, a doctoral student from Hicksville, New York, and the paper's first author. "The overarching goal for manufacturers should be to limit energy transfer."

The fact that some of the trials in the study yielded risk values greater than 50 percent highlights the potential for UAS-human impacts to lead to severe injuries. The significant variation in the data points to the need for comprehensive testing, especially considering the range of shapes, sizes, and materials in the commercial UAS market.

"What happens when the arm strikes first, or the center of mass?" asked Campolettano.

"What we set out to do with this study was to explore some of the many different ways drones and people can interact, and then use that baseline to choose different impact orientations for future studies."

The team is using these initial results to guide the development of a broader set of controlled experiments in a laboratory environment, which will represent a necessary foundation for future regulations on UAS operations over people.

"There's a tremendous demand for more research in this area," said Mark Blanks, the director of the Virginia Tech Mid-Atlantic Aviation Partnership. "The first step was to establish a baseline for how to perform these tests. Now we're doing a lot of work with individual companies, looking at specific airframes and potential mitigations."

"The big question right now is, what is the acceptable level of safety?" said Blanks, who also chairs an industry standards subcommittee developing recommendations for safe operations over people. "How much proof does the FAA need before they say, 'Yes, that's okay'? Once those standards are in place, we're going to see huge expansion in the industry."

Read more at: https://phys.org/news/2017-09-vary-widel...s.html#jCp 

DW1 update: 21 Sept '17 Part II - Telstra believe they can control the rise of the drones.. Confused  

Via ZDNet
Quote:Treat drones as 'flying mobile phones': Telstra CTO

Telstra's CTO said the telco could provide mobile connectivity under a 'drone-control-as-service' offering that would resolve regulatory and control concerns surrounding the use of drones.

[Image: corinne-reichertmk2.jpg]
By Corinne Reichert | September 21, 2017 -- 05:44 GMT (15:44 AEST) |

Telstra CTO Håkan Eriksson has come up with a resolution to all concerns raised over the regulation and control of drones: To treat them as flying mobile phones, and to allow Telstra to provide the necessary connectivity in a "drone-control-as-a-service" offering.
"What if we say every drone is like a flying mobile phone? Put a SIM card in them so they have identity, put the radio in so they can always talk to them, and then if a drone wants to take off it has to talk to a database where we put all the rules," Eriksson said during the annual Telstra Vantage conference in Melbourne on Thursday.

Requirements such as how many drones are allowed to fly in a given area, what height they are allowed to travel at, what hours they are permitted to fly during, and how close they are allowed to be within certain buildings or people could be programmed into this database, Eriksson said.

"If a drone tries to take off outside of those [restrictions], it can't take off because it works with the database ... once you have an identity and connectivity like a mobile phone, you can talk to it, it can talk to a network, you can ask it to land if it has to land, you can prevent it from taking off, you can prevent it from going to certain areas," he explained.

"And then, of course, we can offer that as a service, because we are the best to handle phones. Anything that moves around the mobile network with a SIM card in it, nobody can handle that better than us. This is just a flying mobile phone."

Human certification and drone specification details could also be put into the database, Eriksson, who was appointed as CTO in December, told ZDNet.

"You have to maybe certify ... provided you have a certain certification and you have a drone with these capabilities, then you're allowed to fly it, so you can put all of these rules into the database," he explained.

As well as being able to add regulatory requirements to a drone-control database, treating drones as mobile devices would also solve the line-of-sight problem, Eriksson told ZDNet.

"Today, you use Wi-Fi and you have to fly where you can see the drone ... you can now fly without line of sight [using 4G]," he said, adding that Telstra has been able to control drones flying both interstate and overseas.

"Whilst you're connected to the network, you can fly it anywhere ... except for a little bit more latency, it's not more difficult to fly it in Sydney from Melbourne. Once you can talk directly to the drones, you have to talk to it via the network, then it doesn't really matter where in the network you pop it out."

Concerns about drones getting in the way of aircraft would also be addressed via the use of mobile networks, Eriksson told ZDNet, because coverage only extends to around 150m above ground level.

"The most useful use of drones is up to say maybe 100 metres. There's no point -- if it cannot deliver something, search for somebody, there's no point flying much higher, because that's where you see things. So up to that height, we have pretty good coverage with the mobile network ... and there are no planes there," he explained.

While drones could run off existing 4G and future 5G mobile spectrum, Eriksson told ZDNet it would also be possible to allocate special spectrum where drones need priority in certain cases, or to ensure the network doesn't get overloaded.

According to Eriksson, drones have so many important use cases -- such as inspecting towers, power lines, rooftops, high-rise buildings, railways, pipelines, water tanks, and reservoirs -- that it would be unfortunate to simply ban them without investigating mobile connectivity and control.

"We use drones inside Telstra to do inspection of our mobile towers," he added.
"It means that we can inspect them better, it's safer -- nobody needs to climb the tower to check that the cable is the way it should be, so it's safer -- it saves cost, and we can inspect more towers this way.

"It is a tool that can be used for lots of things to increase productivity in every country, and also in Australia. It can have a part in agriculture, it can have a part in security, search and rescue, construction management, inspections, surveys, delivering. Lots of different use cases."

Eriksson said Telstra is already working on various drone cases in Australia, including the Westpac-backed Little Ripper surf life-saving drones, and on drones being used to count the koala population for wildlife management via thermal imaging.

Telstra's Muru-D also has two startups currently working on drones: FluroSat and NearSat, which are investigating more efficient and cost-effective agricultural management and satellite imaging, respectively.

Eriksson told ZDNet that Telstra is now demonstrating such use cases to the Australian government's Civil Aviation Safety Authority (CASA), which regulates the usage of drones, to show how they can be used via mobile networks.

The Local Government Association of Queensland (LGAQ) in May announced that it would be using Telstra's 4G network for a live trial of drone technology in the Royal Australian Air Force's Amberley Base airspace to examine potential use cases for disaster management.

LGAQ said a combination of Telstra's 4G network with three drone operators and four software platforms would allow the drones to fly beyond visual line of sight; however, current federal government legislation still requires drones to be flown within line of site. Queensland is currently examining its own drone strategy and regulations after investing AU$1 million in drone technology.

Telstra's CTO also used his Vantage 2017 presentation on Thursday to point towards the telco's efforts in vehicle-to-everything (V2X) connectivity.

So far, Telstra's V2X trials have seen it explore vehicle-to-pedestrian communications, such as using the GPS systems on drivers' and pedestrians' smartphones to predict and send alerts about possible collisions; vehicle-to-vehicle communications, which will involve cars speaking to and learning from each other, and sharing information such as the presence of potholes or road incidents; and vehicle-to-infrastructure communications, with traffic lights informing cars of when to slow down.

Eriksson said Telstra is also currently working on three augmented reality (AR) and virtual reality (VR) projects: Project Halo, which uses AR to show maintenance staff, for example, a red line to where exactly a faulty rack is located within a datacentre; Project Pokemon, which uses AR to show customers how to install their new Telstra TV or router at home; and Project Smart Miner, which uses VR headsets to provide a safer training environment for mining without needing to send novices underground.

Disclosure: Corinne Reichert travelled to Telstra Vantage in Melbourne as a guest of Telstra


MTF...P2  Cool
Reply
#56
Drone rules and the importance of harmonisation - Rolleyes

The following article from John Goglia (via Forbes) highlights the importance for there being a common rule set in the regulation and oversight of drones... Wink

Quote:Federal Judge Overturns City Drone Ordinance In First Ruling Of Its Kind



[Image: c39a6e7ead4811c297c0c7d9269943f6?s=62&d=mm&r=g]
John Goglia, Contributor
I write about the airline industry and aviation safety.  Opinions expressed by Forbes Contributors are their own.

[Image: 960x0.jpg?fit=scale]
A DJI Mavic Pro Quadcopter drone. (Photo by Omer Messinger/Getty Images)

The City of Newton, Massachusetts, like many state and local governments, thought it could regulate drone flights in the airspace over its city limits. It passed a law this past December that sought to ban unmanned aircraft flights below 400 feet, to ban flights over private and public property without the landowner's permission, and to require local registration of drones. A federal judge in Massachusetts ruled today that the City of Newton was wrong: It does not have that authority because it is pre-empted by the federal government.

The case was brought by Michael Singer, a physician and inventor who lives in Newton and is an FAA-certified drone pilot. He owns and operates a number of small drones. Dr. Singer challenged four sections of the city's ordinance: one that required local registration of unmanned aircraft and three that regulated flight operations, including the altitude and distance drones could fly.

He asserted in the lawsuit, in which he represented himself, that the city's ordinance was pre-empted by federal law "because it attempts to regulate an almost exclusively federal area of law." The federal district judge reviewing the case, William G. Young, agreed. In his decision, Judge Young states, "Congress has given the FAA the responsibility of regulating the use of airspace for aircraft navigation and to protect individuals and property on the ground and has specifically directed the FAA to integrate drones into the national airspace." [Full disclosure: I served as an expert for Dr. Singer in this case.]

This decision is being cheered on social media by drone operators who have been hampered in their operations by a patchwork of differing laws in cities and states across the country. While the decision does not have a direct impact on any ordinance other than the City of Newton's, I am aware of several cities that have been awaiting this decision before going forward with their own local laws. I am hopeful that this decision will serve to give these cities pause in their promulgation of drone ordinances. The drone industry cannot reach its full potential if operators are forced to comply with differing requirements from town to town and state to state.

 
MTF...P2 Cool
Reply
#57
Sterlo & Barry O back on the frontline - Rolleyes

Quote from this week's SBG:

"..I note the ‘drone wars’ bandwagon continues to attract commentary and an avalanche of ‘if’s and but’s. P2 has, faithfully, despite tedium provided the latest. Ain’t going to plough through that lot, life is too short – I like Barry O’Sullivan’s notion; get licenced, get trained or get fined.."

Via the AFR:
Quote:'Catastrophe waiting to happen': Drone boom safety concerns

[Image: 1506228693227.jpg]A Senate committee inquiry has heard reports of drones landing on cars, bumping into windows of residential towers and even landing on the Sydney Harbour Bridge

by Ronald Mizen
Former air crash investigator turned senator Barry O'Sullivan has warned it should not take a large casualty catastrophe before drones are properly regulated in Australia, as new figures reveal a boom in drone use.

In the past year, the number for remote pilot licences on issue grew by as much as 50 per cent to more than 6000, according the Civil Aviation Safety Authority, while the number of operators of commercial drones of more than two kilograms increased from about 900 to more than 1150.

But it's in the sub-two-kilogram commercial category – which does not require a remote pilot's licence – where the biggest growth was recorded. Since being established 12 months ago, more than 7600 people have registered as operating sub-two-kilogram commercial drone operations.

With the number of drones in Australia estimated to be between 50,000 and 100,000, and only a fraction of those being operated by licensed pilots, concerns have been raised about the risks associated with so much activity in our skies.

[Image: 1428195609282.jpg]Senator Barry O'Sullivan said he was not opposed to drones and recognised their benefits, particularly in regional Australia. Alex Ellinghausen

Over the same period, CASA received more than 700 complaints about drone use – on average it receives three to four complaints a day. Since the beginning of the year the regulator has issued 21 fines for drone misuse, which carry a maximum penalty of $900 or $9000 if the matter goes to court.

A Senate committee inquiry into drone safety heard evidence this year that there were about 180 reported near misses between drones and other aircraft in 2016 with almost no way of knowing who was controlling them at the time.

The committee's chairman and deputy chairman – Labor's Glenn Sterle and the Coalition's Barry O'Sullivan – blasted the current safeguards as a "dog's breakfast" and "non-existent," saying things needed to change before there was a catastrophe.

Catastrophe waiting to happen

"My personal view is that this is a catastrophe waiting to happen," Senator O'Sullivan – an air crash investigator of 20 years – told The Australian Financial Review. "We must get out in front of this so we can restore, as best we can, air safety."

[Image: 1506228612856.jpg]Senator Glenn Sterle said the committee had heard evidence there could be as many as 100,000 drones across Australia. Trevor Collens

Senator O'Sullivan said he was not opposed to drones and recognised their benefits, particularly in regional Australia. But the current regulatory environment was worse than allowing children and unlicensed people to own and operate a car.

It should not take a major event, as with gun control laws, before improvements are made, he said. "If a catastrophe were to happen tomorrow ... I promise you the government would wake up the next day and ground every single one of them."

CASA's rules state that unlicensed drone operators must not fly within 30 metres of people, higher than 120 metres or within 5½ kilometres of airfields. They must also avoid populous areas and night flying, and maintain visual line of sight at all times.

Senator Sterle said the committee heard evidence there could be as many as 100,000 drones in Australia, with reports of drones landing on cars, bumping into windows of residential towers and even landing on the Sydney Harbour Bridge.

"We don't know who owns these things if there's an accident," Senator Sterle said. "That's before we even get into terrorism and national security."

CASA spokesman Peter Gibson said the authority had "no concerns" about the rapid growth in drone usage, but education remained key to ensuring safety in the skies.

"Growth is positive – we are utilising this innovative technology in Australia for community benefit," Mr Gibson said. "Education is a positive way of ensuring the rules are understood."

But education may not be enough. The committee report – which could be tabled in Parliament by year end – is expected to contain strong recommendations to strengthen drone regulations and improve safety standards.


Read more: http://www.afr.com/business/transport/aviation/catastrophe-waiting-to-happen-drone-boom-safety-concerns-20170922-gymwo1#ixzz4tbAWCW1e
MTF...P2 Cool
Reply
#58
(09-24-2017, 10:47 PM)Peetwo Wrote: Sterlo & Barry O back on the frontline - Rolleyes

Quote from this week's SBG:

"..I note the ‘drone wars’ bandwagon continues to attract commentary and an avalanche of ‘if’s and but’s. P2 has, faithfully, despite tedium provided the latest. Ain’t going to plough through that lot, life is too short – I like Barry O’Sullivan’s notion; get licenced, get trained or get fined.."

Via the AFR:
Quote:'Catastrophe waiting to happen': Drone boom safety concerns

[Image: 1506228693227.jpg]A Senate committee inquiry has heard reports of drones landing on cars, bumping into windows of residential towers and even landing on the Sydney Harbour Bridge

by Ronald Mizen
Former air crash investigator turned senator Barry O'Sullivan has warned it should not take a large casualty catastrophe before drones are properly regulated in Australia, as new figures reveal a boom in drone use.

In the past year, the number for remote pilot licences on issue grew by as much as 50 per cent to more than 6000, according the Civil Aviation Safety Authority, while the number of operators of commercial drones of more than two kilograms increased from about 900 to more than 1150.

But it's in the sub-two-kilogram commercial category – which does not require a remote pilot's licence – where the biggest growth was recorded. Since being established 12 months ago, more than 7600 people have registered as operating sub-two-kilogram commercial drone operations.

With the number of drones in Australia estimated to be between 50,000 and 100,000, and only a fraction of those being operated by licensed pilots, concerns have been raised about the risks associated with so much activity in our skies.

[Image: 1428195609282.jpg]Senator Barry O'Sullivan said he was not opposed to drones and recognised their benefits, particularly in regional Australia. Alex Ellinghausen

Over the same period, CASA received more than 700 complaints about drone use – on average it receives three to four complaints a day. Since the beginning of the year the regulator has issued 21 fines for drone misuse, which carry a maximum penalty of $900 or $9000 if the matter goes to court.

A Senate committee inquiry into drone safety heard evidence this year that there were about 180 reported near misses between drones and other aircraft in 2016 with almost no way of knowing who was controlling them at the time.

The committee's chairman and deputy chairman – Labor's Glenn Sterle and the Coalition's Barry O'Sullivan – blasted the current safeguards as a "dog's breakfast" and "non-existent," saying things needed to change before there was a catastrophe.

Catastrophe waiting to happen

"My personal view is that this is a catastrophe waiting to happen," Senator O'Sullivan – an air crash investigator of 20 years – told The Australian Financial Review. "We must get out in front of this so we can restore, as best we can, air safety."

[Image: 1506228612856.jpg]Senator Glenn Sterle said the committee had heard evidence there could be as many as 100,000 drones across Australia. Trevor Collens

Senator O'Sullivan said he was not opposed to drones and recognised their benefits, particularly in regional Australia. But the current regulatory environment was worse than allowing children and unlicensed people to own and operate a car.

It should not take a major event, as with gun control laws, before improvements are made, he said. "If a catastrophe were to happen tomorrow ... I promise you the government would wake up the next day and ground every single one of them."

CASA's rules state that unlicensed drone operators must not fly within 30 metres of people, higher than 120 metres or within 5½ kilometres of airfields. They must also avoid populous areas and night flying, and maintain visual line of sight at all times.

Senator Sterle said the committee heard evidence there could be as many as 100,000 drones in Australia, with reports of drones landing on cars, bumping into windows of residential towers and even landing on the Sydney Harbour Bridge.

"We don't know who owns these things if there's an accident," Senator Sterle said. "That's before we even get into terrorism and national security."

CASA spokesman Peter Gibson said the authority had "no concerns" about the rapid growth in drone usage, but education remained key to ensuring safety in the skies.

"Growth is positive – we are utilising this innovative technology in Australia for community benefit," Mr Gibson said. "Education is a positive way of ensuring the rules are understood."

But education may not be enough. The committee report – which could be tabled in Parliament by year end – is expected to contain strong recommendations to strengthen drone regulations and improve safety standards.


Read more: http://www.afr.com/business/transport/aviation/catastrophe-waiting-to-happen-drone-boom-safety-concerns-20170922-gymwo1#ixzz4tbAWCW1e
 
& via FLYING Magazine:

Quote:    
United Nations Considering Global Drone Guidelines
Two-day event will address possible regulations in the growing market.
By Jake Lamb September 22, 2017

[Image: drone-un.jpg?itok=lgWRL6UT&fc=50,50]In addition to a registry, the United Nations wants to implement global guidelines for all drones.

The aviation arm of the United Nations is sponsoring a two-day event in Montreal, where participants like Amazon Inc., the National Aeronautics and Space Administration, Boeing Co., General Electric Co., two leading industry trade associations, and researchers from China and Brazil will gather to meet about the booming drone industry.

“(The event) isn’t likely to produce specific rules or even a consensus around general principles. It’s not intended to prompt any country to immediately adopt new regulations,” the Wall Street Journal reported on Thursday.

“The default response in many countries is a blanket ban on flying,” which further frustrates both recreational and commercial users, Stephen Creamer, International Civil Aviation Organization’s top safety official, told the WSJ.

The UN is also backing ICAO's proposal to create a global drone registry, which would create a "one-stop shop" for law enforcement to access all drone data and information, as opposed to multiple databases.

MTF...P2 Tongue
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#59
"We've got a Blackhawk grounded" - due drone collision Undecided

Via Oz Aviation yesterday... Wink

Quote:Drone collides with US Army Black Hawk
September 25, 2017 by Paul Sadler 7 Comments
[Image: A_U.S._Army_UH-60M_Black_Hawk_helicopter_USMIL_750.jpg]A file image of a UH-60M Black Hawk helicopter. (US Military/Wikimedia Commons)

A remotely-piloted aircraft collided with a US Army UH-60M Black Hawk while it was flying at 500ft over a residential neighbourhood on Staten Island, New York on September 23.

Believed to be the first time a drone has collided with a helicopter in flight, the incident happened at about 1930 local time while two Black Hawks, from the 82nd Airborne Division based at Fort Bragg, North Carolina, were on a security mission for the United Nations General Assembly above the Midland Beach section of the island.

The US Army confirmed the drone struck the left side of fuselage just behind the co-pilot’s door with debris from the disintegrated drone striking one of the Black Hawk’s four main rotor blades causing minor damage.

The Black Hawk made a normal approach and landing at the nearby Linden Airport in New Jersey.

“There were no adverse impacts to the flight,” said 82nd Airborne Division spokesperson Lieutenant Colonel Joe Buccino.

“One blade was dented in two spots and requires replacement and there is a dented window.”

A piece of the drone was found to be lodged in the oil cooler at the bottom of the helicopter’s main rotor system. An image of the collected debris suggests the drone was a DJI Phantom.

Although New York City bans drones from flying in most locations, those registered with the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) are permitted to fly above just a handful of New York’s city parks.

The US Army, New York Police Department and the FAA are investigating the incident.
The comments are also worth regurgitating... Rolleyes
Quote:Mick181 says

September 25, 2017 at 10:10 am

Have fun with your Drones while it lasts, can see severe restrictions or even Bans comming eventually. Time to bring in laws with severe penalties for their missuse.


PAUL says

September 25, 2017 at 11:41 am

Yep as I commented before-its only a matter of time



Philip says

September 25, 2017 at 2:47 pm

Yes, Agree – if you look at the cost differential of a drone vs the damage of any impact to aircraft or helos, its not going to take much more to get them banned or regulated to specific areas.

They are equally then worthy ‘flies-in-the-ointment’ to assist in containing flight operations for an adversary though. Just a thought.



Paul says

September 25, 2017 at 5:28 pm

Funny, currently just watching 2 drones flying at 800 feet above me in a controlled zone. Laws need to be very strict with hefty penalties.



Allan says

September 26, 2017 at 3:57 am

Time to ban all uav`s that are not operated by a responsible/licenced operator. It`s only a matter of time before one idiot causes an incident to awful to contemplate.



PAUL says

September 26, 2017 at 10:35 am

Agree All drone operators should have to pass exams operating anything that can fly above 50ft in controlled airspace- they should at least have a pass in Aviation Law to gain an operators license & then registered & fitted with GPS.



Boleropilot says

September 26, 2017 at 10:51 am

I recently read the specifications for one of the newer drones with the latest technology – it stated that the range of the drone is 7km – that’s about 20,000 feet, folks, if the operator decides to go straight up…..and for those who don’t know about the capabilities of these little monsters, they don’t have to be in the sight of the operator. Most have cameras that transmit video back to the operator, plus little niceties like Return To Base with the press of a button – some will even do that if the battery gets low or the drone starts to move out of range.

I live in a rural area and have been a radio control (fixed wing) enthusiast for about three decades. I am currently building a hexacopter from scratch (just to prove I can do it – talk about a steep learning curve) and I see both GA and RAAus aircraft below 1,000 feet passing over our property on a regular basis.

IF I ever get my drone flying it will be heading to the deck asap if I even hear an aircraft nearby – hopefully the young bloke who lives at the top of a nearby hill will do the same thing (I have spoken to him and his parents – they are fine, he’s a surly teenager).

What could possibly go wrong ?


TICK...TOCK Minister 6D (OGAD) Chester - Blush


MTF...P2 Cool
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#60
P7 says - Two area’s of ‘real’ concern.

“One blade was dented in two spots and requires replacement and there is a dented window.”

Now, I’ve no idea the cost of a replacement blade for a Black Hawk; but its safe to say they ain’t cheap, similarly, I’ve no idea the cost of a ‘new’ window, but again; betcha socks they’re significant. So, time, money and effort required to repair a ‘minor’ strike.

Then there is the down time cost to calculate – once again not insignificant when you add the cost of replacing the aircraft while it’s ‘in the shed’. You could drag in the cost of diverting maintenance personnel from scheduled maintenance to ‘repair’ duties and add that to the bill.

“[while] two Black Hawks, from the 82nd Airborne Division based at Fort Bragg, North Carolina, were on a security mission for the United Nations General Assembly above the Midland Beach section of the island.”

Not only is there a pretty hefty repair bill but there is also an uncompleted ‘security’ mission. Clearly, this was a required operation. They don’t just despatch Black Hawks on security missions for laughs or a joy flight for the boys. So, in theory at least, there was a hole in the security knitting.

A small drone worth peanuts can disable one of the military’s finest, cost a small fortune in repairs and potentially jeopardise security.

It may not have been a ‘catastrophic’ event – not a real Glaswegian one – but it seems to me that the wee drone caused enough completely unnecessary trouble and expense to be worthy of straightforward- cash and no bull-pooh – type of control and regulation. Bet my boots the US Army mechanics and pilots would like to meet the drone operator; just for a quiet little chat.

Darren 6D (AGAD) will no doubt move swiftly and with purpose to save the Australian tax payer such similar expense and depravation of security services – won’t he?
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