A few years ago, when you heard the word drone you would immediately think of some clandestine operation somewhere in the Middle East that was aimed at a terrorist cell. That type of thinking is rapidly changing as everyone is finding new uses for drones. They are a great example of how military technology eventually ends up on the civilian store shelves, but are all these new uses for drones a good thing? I’ll give you some information and let you decide for yourself.
The Dark Side of Drone Use
Just last month alone there were two, not just one but two, confirmed incidents at JFK International Airport of drones that came dangerously close to commercial airliners on final approach for landing. You may wonder how a little drone can pose a threat to a large commercial airliner. It’s not that they likely it could bring a commercial jet down in a collision, but if one was sucked into one of the jets engines on landing or take off the results could be catastrophic.
Is the FAA concerned? Absolutely, but they are also under pressure from political lobbies to allow drones more freedom to be flown. Currently, drones are not allowed to fly outside of the sight of their controller, are not allowed to fly at night and cannot be flown over a few hundred feet high. The FAA has just started testing new procedures that will let a railroad company inspect their track with drones, a farming company to oversee their crops and CNN is going to be allowed to test news gathering with drones.
Another alarming thing about drones is the fact that they are becoming so readily available. They could become a potent source for terrorists to use as a means for delivering bombs and other weapons of mass destruction; they are virtually undetectable by any radar and small hobby drones require little more to operate than the money it costs to obtain one.
New Drone Uses
Google says they hope to be delivering packages to your doorstep with drones as early as 2020 and Amazon is thinking right along the same lines. It probably is the type of thinking that has UPS, FedEx and DHL a little bit nervous; don’t be surprised if those companies are already looking into drone use too.
The Navy is currently looking into new uses for drone technology too. They just recently tested 3D printing drones at sea; the first one that was made using this technology had a successful maiden flight. The technology could prove very useful as a means to easily store drones and replace the ones that are lost in combat. If you have enough copy paper you could theoretically make your own air force.
NASA could not resist getting into the act either. They just recently tested a large drone that has ten engines and flies a lot like an Osprey Aircraft; it takes off horizontally initially and then flies like an airplane. NASA said the platform could lead to the first use of drones flying humans.
With all of the new uses for drones and all of the new technology that is resulting because of it, it will be interesting to see where drone technology takes us in the near future.
Disclaimer: The content in this article is the opinion of the writer and does not necessarily reflect the policies or opinions of US Patriot Tactical.
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