Utilizing Airports as New Testing Arena

airport. image by pixabay

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Drones continue to concern law enforcement and security authorities charged with protecting critical infrastructure and large public events. Drones have become a genuine threat to airports, among other assets. Regulations published in the US will require most unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) weighing 250 grams or more to broadcast remote identification information in the coming years, creating the capability to more efficiently monitor law-abiding UAV activity while singling out bad actors.

The US Federal Aviation Agency FAA announced that five airports will take part in field trials of “at least 10 different technologies or systems” designed to detect and mitigate drones. The agency discouraged airport operators from deploying their own countermeasures. “The FAA does not support the use of counter-UAV systems by any entities other than federal departments with explicit statutory authority to use this technology, including requirements for extensive coordination with the FAA to ensure safety risks are mitigated,” the agency noted in a press release.

According to aopa.org, among the five airports selected for testing counter-UAV technology include Atlantic City International Airport in Atlantic City, and New Jersey, which is adjacent to the FAA William J. Hughes Technical Center, where the agency conducted initial evaluations of various systems. The agency expects to conclude the counter-UAV testing by the end of 2023, after which new tools may become available to airport operators based on standards now being developed. 

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