A collection of presentations from June 2012 detailing the NASA Unmanned Aircraft Systems (UAS) Integration in the National Airspace System (NAS) Project’s efforts to integrate drones into the national airspace including technical problems with frequency allocation as well as technologies designed to avoid mid-air collisions.
FAA Integration of Civil Unmanned Aircraft Systems (UAS) in the National Airspace System (NAS) Roadmap
Since the early 1990s, unmanned aircraft systems (UAS) have operated on a limited basis in the National Airspace System (NAS). Until recently, UAS mainly supported public operations, such as military and border security operations. The list of potential uses is now rapidly expanding to encompass a broad range of other activities, including aerial photography, surveying land and crops, communications and broadcast, monitoring forest fires and environmental conditions, and protecting critical infrastructures. UAS provide new ways for commercial enterprises (civil operations) and public operators to enhance some of our nation’s aviation operations through increased operational efficiency and decreased costs, while maintaining the safety of the NAS.
UN Report of the Special Rapporteur on Extrajudicial, Summary or Arbitrary Executions September 2013
In the present report, the Special Rapporteur focuses on the use of lethal force through armed drones from the perspective of protection of the right to life. Although drones are not illegal weapons, they can make it easier for States to deploy deadly and targeted force on the territories of other States. As such, they risk undermining the protection of life in the immediate and longer terms. If the right to life is to be secured, it is imperative that the limitations posed by international law on the use of force are not weakened by broad justifications of drone strikes.
This handbook provides pre-doctrinal guidance on the planning, execution, and assessment of joint integrated persistent surveillance (JIPS) by a joint task force (JTF) and its components. Significant prior work has been done in support of persistent intelligence, surveillance, and reconnaissance (ISR) and much of the information in this handbook was gleaned from that data. However, the scope of this handbook pertains to the subset of persistent surveillance: the processes which contribute to creating a persistent surveillance strategy and those required for executing persistent surveillance missions. The document serves as a bridge between current best practices in the field and incorporation of value-added ideas in joint doctrine.
An investigation report concerning the crash of a RQ-4A Global Hawk unmanned aerial vehicle on June 11, 2012 during a training flight near the Naval Air Station Patuxent River in Maryland. The report concludes that the accident occurred due to ” mechanical malfunction of the right ruddervator actuator”. However, the pilot “failed to follow the proper emergency procedures” which “did not produce disastrous results in this particular event; however, future breaches of established procedures could produce a different outcome.”
The following map and photos depict current and future locations used by the U.S. military for launching drones and surveillance flights throughout Central and North Africa. The map is not complete and reflects available information from open sources. Similar to…
Unmanned Ground Systems consist of a powered physical system with no human operator on aboard the principal platform, which can act, either operated remotely or with some degree of autonomy, to accomplish assigned tasks. Unmanned Ground Systems may be mobile or stationary, can be smart learning, self-adaptive, and includes all associated supporting components such as Operator Control Units (OCU).
It shall be the mission of those personnel of the Seattle Police Department who are trained in the use of unmanned aerial systems (UAS), to use this resource to protect the lives and property of citizens and first responders in a constitutionally and legally sound manner. Use of an aerial system can be utilized in circumstances which would save life and property, as well as being able to detect possible dangers that could not otherwise be seen.
The Robotic Aircraft for Public Safety (RAPS) project will invite SUAS vendors to a chosen location and evaluate each system using key performance parameters under a wide variety of simulated but realistic and relevant real-world operational scenarios, such as law enforcement operations, search and rescue, and fire and hazardous material spill response. The SUAS vendors will provide technically mature, flight proven vehicles and their fully-integrated sensors for evaluation. Safety concerns will also be assessed such as the aircraft’s capability for safe flight in the event of a loss of communications between the aircraft and the ground controller.
A presentation accompanied a recent demonstration of the Cloak Blade, a micro-copter developed by Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory under contract from the U.S. Navy.
Rapid advances in technology have led to the development and increased use of unmanned aircraft. That technology is now making its way into the hands of law enforcement officers nationwide. We also live in a culture that is extremely sensitive to the idea of preventing unnecessary government intrusion into any facet of our lives. Personal rights are cherished and legally protected by the Constitution. Despite their proven effectiveness, concerns about privacy threaten to overshadow the benefits this technology promises to bring to public safety. From enhanced officer safety by exposing unseen dangers, to finding those most vulnerable who may have wandered away from their caregivers, the potential benefits are irrefutable. However, privacy concerns are an issue that must be dealt with effectively if a law enforcement agency expects the public to support the use of UA by their police.
The PM RS JPO initiated development of an integrated GRMP in response to direction from senior Army and Marine Corps leadership in 2005. The GRMP is intended to provide Army and Marine Corps ground robotic stakeholders a common information resource document, as well as a comprehensive plan that links robotic S&T Projects and Acquisition/Contingency Programs to User Current Capability Gaps, Future Capability Gaps, and S&T Shortfalls. The pressing need for reliable ground robotic systems capable of detecting and warning of the presence of hidden improvised explosive devices (IEDs), chemical and biological agents, and related threats to ground troops employed by insurgents in combat zones greatly increases the importance of making every S&T dollar count toward filling critical User capability gaps. In addition, the GRMP provides decision makers a tool for making critical resource decisions.
A spokesman for U.S. Special Operations Command (USSOCOM) has provided statements to publications in New Hampshire and Oregon indicating that information regarding domestic drone activities provided by Public Intelligence is inaccurate, despite confirmations from the offices of two U.S. Senators. Following our publication last week of a map of current and proposed Department of Defense drone activities within the U.S., several journalists with local publications around the country wrote articles regarding drone activities that were listed in their area. David Brooks of the Nashua Telegraph wrote about the listing of New Hampshire’s Mt. Washington as the site of a USSOCOM drone activity involving small unmanned aerial vehicles including the Raven and Wasp. Corey Pein of the Willamette Week wrote about a planned USSOCOM drone activity in Portland that was listed as utilizing the same types of drones.
Several tables displaying the current Department of Defense unmanned aircraft systems (UAS) inventory levels (FY2012 budgeted inventory) and planned inventory through FY2017. The information in the tables was taken from the recent Department of Defense Report to Congress on Future Unmanned Aircraft Systems Training, Operations, and Sustainability.
The Department of Defense (DoD) continues to increase its investment in unmanned aircraft systems (UAS) to meet battlefield commanders’ demand for their unique capabilities. The emphasis on long-endurance, unmanned intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance (ISR) assets -many with strike capabilities – is a direct reflection of recent operational experience and further Combatant Commander demands. This increase in demand has resulted in a large number of UAS capable of a wide range of missions. This large number of fielded UAS has also driven a strong demand for access within the National Airspace System (NAS). This need for airspace access to test new systems, train operators, and conduct continental United States (CONUS)-based missions has quickly exceeded the current airspace available for military operations. The situation will only be exacerbated as units return from overseas contingencies.
The following map depicts the approximate locations of current and planned Department of Defense unmanned aircraft systems (UAS) activities inside the U.S. The locations, service branches, and types of UAS flown were obtained from several publicly released DoD presentations. If…
A presentation from April 2012 discussing NASA’s Unmanned Aircraft Systems (UAS) Integration in the National Airspace System (NAS) Project which will work to overcome problems integrating drones into the domestic airspace.
While reliance on UAS continues to grow, the ability to integrate UAS into the National Airspace System (NAS) to support operations, training, and testing has not kept pace. Routine access to exercise and execute Combatant Command (COCOM)-tasked missions, and to support broader military and civil missions such as Homeland Security (HLS), Homeland Defense (HD), and Defense Support of Civil Authorities (DSCA) is necessary. Current NAS access for UAS is greatly limited under interim FAA policies that govern UAS operations in the NAS. Currently, DoD UAS operations conducted outside of Restricted, Warning and Prohibited areas are authorized under a temporary Certificate of Waiver or Authorization (COA) from the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) or under limited conditions outlined in the 2007 DoD-FAA Memorandum of Agreement (MoA). Although DoD has been able to facilitate a small number of flights through the COA process, DoD has not been able to obtain the level of airspace access necessary to accomplish the wide range of DoD UAS missions at current and projected operational tempos.
Joint Advanced Warfighting School Thesis on Problems Integrating Unmanned Aircraft Systems (UAS) into the National Airspace System
In the last 10 years, the unmanned aircraft system (UAS) has captured the public’s imagination and fascination with their ability to provide instantaneous video feeds of military and covert CIA operations in far away places like Afghanistan and Iraq. The rapid proliferation of the UAS and the eventual redeployment of current systems deployed to Afghanistan and Iraq will require the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) to provide unrestricted unmanned aircraft access within the National Airspace System (NAS). The Department of Defense (DoD) requires routine access to the NAS to execute directed missions, meet training requirements, and perform necessary testing to meet the Joint Force Commander’s (JFC’s) established mission priorities. Over the past several years, the DoD has been able to execute a small portion of UAS flights in the NAS but current rules and regulation do not facilitate seamless integration with manned aircraft. The purpose of this study is to show that although the DoD and the FAA recognize the importance of integrating manned and unmanned aircraft within the NAS, there are many challenges and gaps that must be bridged to facilitate successful integration. The most important challenge to overcome when integrating manned and unmanned aircraft into the same airspace is safety.
Several statistics reports on unmanned aircraft systems (UAS) mishaps that are compiled yearly by the Air Force Safety Center. The following reports are the most recent that are publicly available.
Is your state in need of a growth industry that can employ large numbers of people and contribute to the local economy? You may want to consider the drone industry and that’s just what a number of states around the country have done. Ohio, in particular, has made this a prominent component of their statewide economic strategy, hoping to encourage local economic growth and create jobs by making the state the premier location for drone testing and research in the U.S. To further these efforts, the State of Ohio has worked with several business development groups to create the Ohio Unmanned Aircraft Systems (UAS) Initiative to promote the state’s prominent role in the drone industry. The potential for job growth presented by the Ohio UAS Initiative is highly coveted by a state that has lost more than 369,097 manufacturing jobs in the last decade.
This is the first report of progress in producing a NextGen Unmanned Aircraft Systems Research, Development and Demonstration Roadmap (NextGen UAS RD&D Roadmap). The activity was established to enable a responsive, efficient, timely, coordinated multiagency Research and Development (R&D) effort that will enable the U.S. to realize fully the benefits of Unmanned Aircraft Systems (UAS) in the National Airspace System (NAS).
Restricted U.S. Army Unmanned Aircraft Systems (UAS) Ground Based Sense and Avoid (GBSAA) Airspace Integration presentation from July 2009.
U.S. and allied combat operations continue to highlight the value of unmanned systems in the modern combat environment. Combatant Commanders (CCDRs) and warfighters value the inherent features of unmanned systems, especially their persistence, versatility, and reduced risk to human life. The U.S. military Services are fielding these systems in rapidly increasing numbers across all domains: air, ground, and maritime. Unmanned systems provide diverse capabilities to the joint commander to conduct operations across the range of military operations: environmental sensing and battlespace awareness; chemical, biological, radiological, and nuclear (CBRN) detection; counter-improvised explosive device (C-IED) capabilities; port security; precision targeting; and precision strike. Furthermore, the capabilities provided by these unmanned systems continue to expand.