Weekly Roundup 11/6/17

China’s AT200 cargo drone conducted its maiden flight in late October and may be used to resupply bases in the South China Sea. Image via YouTube

October 30, 2017 – November 5, 2017

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At the Center for the Study of the Drone

In an interview with Broadly, Center for the Study of the Drone co-director Arthur Holland Michel discusses the growing use of drones for stalking and voyeurism.


India’s Directorate General of Civil Aviation unveiled draft regulations for small unmanned aircraft systems. The proposed rules would require that individuals wishing to use drones weighing over two kilograms obtain a security clearance, a permit, an identification number, and a remote pilot license. It is currently illegal to fly a drone in India without permission from the government. (Reuters)

The Nigerien government has granted the U.S. permission to operate armed drones in Niger. In an interview with state radio, Defense Minister Kalla Mountari said that the decision was made prior to the attack on U.S. and Nigerien forces at Tongo Tongo. The Nigerien government had previously been opposed to the idea of the U.S. using armed drones within its borders. (AFP)

Commentary, Analysis, and Art

The Center for a New American Security held a conference on artificial intelligence and global security.

At Foreign Policy, John R. Allen and Amir Husain argue that the U.S. is falling behind in the race to develop artificial intelligence.

In the latest edition of Unmanned Systems magazine, Brian Spowl looks at the different organizations that used drones to respond to the hurricanes in the U.S. (MazDigital)

In a statement, Human Rights Watch has argued that President Trump’s decision to loosen some of the rules guiding drone strikes will increase the risk of civilian deaths.

At the Verge, Ben Popper looks at how and why DJI has made its new drone, the Mavic Pro Platinum, quieter than previous versions.

At Motherboard, David Axe writes that the Russian military has established a unit dedicated to hunting drones.

At the Tampa Bay Times, Howard Altman looks at the different technologies that U.S. Special Operations Command is testing in the ThunderDrone project.

In an interview with the British Journal of Photography, Graeme Robertson says that drones can “transform you into a photographer that can see everything.”

At the Associated Press, John Seewer looks at some of the challenges that police departments face in implementing a successful drone program.

At the Royal Aeronautical Society, Tim Robinson argues that British pilots who fly drones should be recognized for their service.

The American Civil Liberties Union filed a Freedom of Information Act request with the Department of State for the Trump administration’s policies on drone strikes. (ACLU)

At the San Diego Union-Tribune, David Hernandez looks at how drones are taking on a larger role at the San Diego County Sheriff’s Department.

In a speech at the Department of Transportation, New Mexico Governor Susana Martinez said that her state will apply to be part of the FAA’s drone regulations pilot program. (Santa Fe New Mexican)

The Economist looks at recent progress in an experiment to turn the U.S. military’s Black Hawk helicopter into an uninhabited vehicle.

At the Nikkei Asian Review, Ryosuke Eguchi and Naoki Matsuda write that several drones are competing for the favor of Japanese rice farmers.

At Lawfare, Michael C. Horowitz and Julia M. Macdonald consider whether the campaign to ban lethal autonomous weapons will succeed.

Know Your Drone

Singapore’s DSO defense research organization unveiled the V15, a fixed-wing vertical take-off and landing surveillance drone. (Channel News Asia)

The Chinese Academy of Sciences announced that it has successfully tested an experimental autonomous surveillance drone at an altitude of over 50,000 feet. (South China Morning Post)

Meanwhile, in a flight test, an Aviation Industry Corporation of China AV500 unmanned helicopter reached an altitude of over 15,000 feet. (China Military)

Israeli firm Tactical Robotics is equipping its Cormorant cargo and evacuation drone with a Safran Helicopter Engines Arriel 2 helicopter powerplant. (AUVSI)

In a demonstration at White Sands Missile Range in New Mexico, the U.S. Army used a Short Range Air Defense system mounted on a Stryker armored vehicle to destroy a target drone. (Scout)

U.S. defense firm Kratos announced that it completed a multi-aircraft demonstration of its UTAP-22 Mako drone at a recent military exercise for the Air Force. (Unmanned Systems Technology)

Marine unmanned systems maker ASV Global unveiled the C-Worker 12P, a 12-meter unmanned surface vessel. (Unmanned Systems Technology)

U.S. technology firm Aquabotix unveiled the Live Remote Control system, which allows users to operate unmanned undersea vehicles from anywhere in the world. (Institution of Mechanical Engineers)

Kazakhstan’s military is establishing a maintenance, repair, and overhaul facility for unmanned undersea vehicles. (Jane’s)

Drones at Work

The Chinese Academy of Sciences announced that it intends to use its developmental AT200 cargo drone to carry out resupply missions for military installations in the South China Sea. (Jane’s)

A drone distributing candy at an event in Gifu Prefecture, Japan, crashed into a crowd of onlookers, injuring six. (Japan Times)

A joint study by the Department of Defense and counter-drone technology firm Dedrone found that, on average, two unauthorized drones are spotted every day flying above Fort McNair, which is just four miles from the White House. (CNBC)

U.S. defense firm Northrop Grumman is set to deliver the first operational MQ-4C Triton surveillance drone to Point Mugu Naval Air Station this week. (The Los Angeles Times)

Walmart is set to begin using shelf-scanning robots to restock inventory in their stores. (Fortune)

Japanese e-commerce firm Rakuten is using drones to deliver hot food to residents in Fukushima’s Minamisoma City. (CNBC)

The council of Oceanside, California has proposed a local ordinance that would require drone operators to obtain a permit in order to fly in the city. (San Diego Union-Tribune)

Officials in Jiangxi province, China used a drone in the search for a toddler who has been missing for several days. (South China Morning Post)

The Pakistani military shot down a DJI Phantom drone that it claims was operated by Indian forces near the Line of Control. (Jane’s)

Police in Port Lincoln, Australia, are investigating several reports of drones being used to spy on women in their homes. (ABC)

The U.S. Department of Transportation held an event to inaugurate the FAA’s new drone integration program. (YouTube)

A drone in Florida captured dramatic footage of a surfer rescuing a man whose boat had capsized. (ABC)

Police in Scottsdale, Arizona used a drone to track down two missing boys. (ABC15)

The government of Switzerland has banned its officials from visiting the Golan Heights after it was revealed that several representatives had visited the area three times to observe drone tests. (Times of Israel)

A man in Orem, Utah was sentenced to 160 days of jail for using a drone to spy on residents in the town. (The Salt Lake Tribune) For more on drone legal cases, click here.

The Texas State Legislature passed a statute restricting several types of drone use. (101Corpuschristi.com)

Residents or a neighborhood in Albuquerque, New Mexico believe that a group of thieves who were recently arrested in the area used a drone to scope out homes. (KOB4)

A drone operator in Marshfield, Wisconsin used a drone to help find a couple’s missing dog. (WSAW)

In a video posted to YouTube, a bartender used a drone to help him mix a cocktail. (Nerdist)

Industry Intel

The U.S. Army awarded Alliant Techsystems Operations a $8.5 million contract for integrating the anti-UAV defense system with a mobile platform. (DoD)

Kratos Defense and Security Solutions received a $14.5 million contract for eight jet-powered drone systems from an unnamed national security customer. (Press Release)  

L3 Solutions announced that the U.S. Army had awarded it a $97 million contract to support the Army’s Manned-Unmanned Teaming eXpanded Capabilities program. (Press Release)

Meanwhile, L3 will join Boeing to help with the design of advanced sensor and communications capabilities for the Extra Large Unmanned Undersea Vehicle. (Press Release)

PrecisionHawk and HAZON Solutions are partnering to integrate PrecisionHawk’s Low Altitude Traffic and Airspace Safety platform on HAZON drones. (Hampton Roads Business Journal)  

Qualcomm awarded the University of California San Diego a $200,000 grant to build a net cage for testing drones. (San Diego Union-Tribune)  

The U.S. Navy awarded SeeByte a $22.8 million contract for software support services for MK 18 unmanned underwater vehicless. (FBO)

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