Weekly News Digest For September 21, 2014, Pt. 1

Despite FAA dithering, a drone economy sprouts on the farm

Clay Dillow, September 16, 2014


While the FAA struggles to define laws for commercial use on drones, drones are finding a place in the economy on farms. In an effort to increase yield, better monitor crops, and cause less damage to crops, farmers are investing in drones. These drones aid farmers mainly through surveillance at this stage, allowing farmers to look at the status of their crops in conditions they otherwise may not be able to, such as after a storm, and also to look at crops more closely without damaging them in the way that the crop would be damaged by more traditional methods. As a result, agriculture is the first facet of the economy that is experiencing the benefit of drone usage.


In Switzerland, police find a use for drones

Matt McFarland, September 17, 2014

Police in Zurich have recently added drones to their list of tools. Zurich police first acquired a drone last year, using it to survey land. It proved useful in that respect, being able to reach previously inaccessible locations. This inspired Zurich police to use drones for greater effect, implementing them in other departments, such as to take aerial photos or videos of traffic collisions. Drones can take photos of accidents and fires, helping aid later investigations by producing photographic evidence that would otherwise but unattainable.



Germany and France consider sending drones to Ukraine

September 16

Fourteen experts from on unmanned aerial vehicles (UAV) from Germany have been sent to the Ukraine along with colleagues from France to examine possible damage near the city of Lugansk. The experts are there to determine if it is possible to deploy drones in the area to monitor the truce between rebel and Kiev forces. If it is determined that conditions allow for drone reconnaissance, Germany, and possibly France, will send Luna reconnaissance drones, which are capable of flying at 16,000 feet for six hours.