Crop Dusting Yamaha R-MAX Receives 333 Exemption

6 May , 2015  


The FAA has granted a 333 exemption to the Yamaha R-MAX, a remote-controlled crop dusting unmanned helicopter that tips the scales at over 200lbs fully-loaded. The R-MAX was developed in Japan in the 90’s and is a great tool for “precision agriculture”, which allows farmers to precisely target areas in a more efficient and cost-effective manner. From the FAA pdf: More…


Episode 5: The latest from 3DRobotics and DJI, Boston Marathon and Cuba are No-Drone zones & The Drones for Good Award in Dubai

16 Apr , 2015  


In this episode of the podcast, I discuss the latest products from 3DRobotics, the Solo, and DJI, the Phantom 3.



Drones For Good Competition in Dubai

16 Apr , 2015   Video

Introducing the Drones for Good Award, a competion held Dubai, United Arab Emirates. According to their site:

The International competition is dedicated to rewarding the most promising prototypes of future services that may benefit humanity at large.

Teams were to apply in May 2014 and the final award ceremony was held in January 2015. The finalists were flown in for all over the world, all expenses paid, and in the final ceremony, the winning team of each category, National, Internation and Government, wins $1 million (US).

Check out their website for all the details, including winning teams, sponsorships and objectives at https://www.dronesforgood.ae/en


Going to Cuba? Leave your Multirotor at home

15 Apr , 2015   Video

If you are planning on traveling to Cuba, now that the US-Cuban relations are thawing, and you are thinking about packing your favorite UAV to get some amazing aerial footage, do yourself a favor and leave it at home. From The Verge:

Dane Christensen was entering Cuba in February when a customs official pulled him aside: he was carrying a DJI Phantom, which the officials viewed as a kind of contraband. The drone was seized at the border, and stored at customs until Christensen left the country. “It was my full intention to use my drone to get some amazing shots of the beaches and Cubanos surfing,” Christensen says. Unfortunately, without the drone, all Christensen’s footage had to be handheld.

Hot tip: Do not bring your drone to Cuba | The Verge.


Boston Marathon: a no-drone zone

14 Apr , 2015  


For those of you that were hoping to get some cool aerial shots at the 2015 Boston Marathon, Boston Police has declared that it will be a no-drone zone, so you might as well unpack your gear and plan otherwise:

The entire route of the Boston Marathon will be a ‘No Drone Zone.’ The public is being advised NOT to operate any type of drone (unmanned aerial vehicle), including remotely controlled model aircraft, over or near the course, or anywhere within sight of runners or spectators.

For the full press release from the Massachusetts Emergency Management Agency, click here.

[Via Mashable]


3DR Predictions for the April 13 2015 Annoucement

7 Apr , 2015   Video

Here are my predictions (and educated guesses) for the upcoming 3D Robotics announcement on April 13, 2015, and this is solely based on their teaser video above:

They are going to release a new, all black, plastic uni-body, quad, with a sexy name and tout it as being so easy to fly, that even a monkey can do it. 3DR replied to my comment thread on YouTube. More…


New Announcement from 3DRobotics

7 Apr , 2015  


3D Robotics, the San Diego-based UAV company, who recently announced a $50 million round of venture funding, just released a teaser video featuring what seems to be a new quad, and from what I gather, it is so easy to fly, even a monkey can do it. Please, 3D Robotics, don’t make these things “idiot proof” or attempt to market them as such. Sure, you want to sell a ton of these and DJI seems to be eating everyone’s lunch, but, being the open-source pioneers that you are, also focus on educating those who want to fly. The last thing we want is more fly-aways because of bad GPS locks. Technology won’t solve the problem with newbs trying to fly multirotors out of their window and stright into the White House lawn. More…


Ways Unmanned Aerial Vehicles Can Be Used Positively

3 Apr , 2015  


Unmanned aerial vehicles have been cast in a bad light recently, which is completely unfounded. Of course, there are incidents that have caused “drones” to be viewed negatively. But with the vast uses for unmanned aerial vehicles, it is baseless. Modified UAVs could revolutionize science, farming, and delivery systems. In the scheme of things, unmanned aerial vehicles are very cheap compared to some of the techniques that are being employed by these systems. More…


Facebook’s Plan for Internet via UAVs

26 Mar , 2015  


Mark Zuckerberg, CEO of Facebook just posted the following:

As part of our Internet.org effort to connect the world, we’ve designed unmanned aircraft that can beam internet access down to people from the sky. More…


Episode 4: Episode 4: Drones over Paris, The FAA harrassing a UAV enthusiast and his Youtube channel, DJI and 3D Robotics raising venture capital and UAviators.org

13 Mar , 2015  


In this episode of the podcast, I break down “drones over Paris” incidents with a timeline of the events. I explore the media frenzy over a letter that a UAV hobbyist received from the FAA where they equate his monetized YouTube videos as a commercial endeavor. I interview the aforementioned hobbyist Jayson Hanes to get a first-person account of what really happened.