Discussion in 'Article Discussion' started by bit-tech, 24 Jul 2017.
"The UK is at the forefront of an exciting and fast growing drones market and it is important we make the most of this emerging global sector."
I see that "make the most of" now translates to "completely destroy civilian use of".
Well, playing devil's advocate, that all depends on how expensive and/or much of a pain in the arse registration and training is. You have to register and train to use your car, but the introduction of registration and training for car use didn't seem to have much of a deleterious impact on civilian use of cars...
(Yes, yes, a drone is far less of a necessity than a car, I know.)
If it's nowt more than "stick yer serial number in 'ere and pay £10 for a Drone Licence after completing this half-day Don't Ram It Into Aircraft You Berk course" then I'd say it's A Good Thing; if it's "fill in a billion personal bits of information in 'ere and pay £1,000 for a Drone Licence after completing this month-long in-depth training course" then it's A Bad Thing. Sadly, the DfT has yet to decide which it'll be...
Not entirely sure what other option they have when numptees fly them stupidly and shut down airports unless they just tried a registration process to begin with.
Unfortunatley too many idiots with no self control have bought them, so this is the result.
Perhaps we should instead deregulate everything and just have a register for idiots.
Being a slow day i had a quick read of the report into the effect of drone collisions on aircraft because i was expecting it to cover what happens when they go into an engine, very disappointed that it only covered windscreens and helicopter tail rotors.
I know turbine engines can withstand some bird strikes but I'd love to know how they handle drone strikes, i mean who doesn't like the idea of seeing what happens when a drone meets a million pound blender.
I have a feeling that for people who use drones for nefarious reasons will be unaffected. Have they set down what makes a drone?
True. The cynic in me just assumes any modern licensing plan will be exceedingly onerous.
But the mindset is already "drone ownership is a problem", so I feel like the inherent response is to view them as a thing to be stamped out.
Also, the "geofencing" mandate strikes me as damaging even without burdensome licensing rules. Sure a GPS receiver isn't that expensive these days, but it still raises costs. Especially in conjunction with the added cost of testing the firmware and updating the ban lists. Assuming manufacturers actually test their new firmware.
Depending on how this is written(does it exempt smaller, cheaper, less-intelligent devices?), it could completely eliminate the lower-cost "entry level" quadcoptors from the market while looking like a reasonable concession.
Geofencing is already a thing; every single commercial drone with autopilot technology - even just return-home - already has a GPS, and to my knowledge already has a global list of no-fly-zones which the manufacturer keeps updated (and which trigger even if you're trying to manually fly the thing into the no-fly-zone). I know for a fact DJI does.
What the government is talking about is making the list of no-fly-zones bigger, not suddenly introducing it as something new.
All the big, heavy, dangerous drones - to my knowledge - come with GPS and geofencing; the ones that don't have GPS are light, reasonably safe, toy things that wouldn't come under the licensing requirements in the first place as they're under 250g.
From what I read in the UK you can't fly within 150 metres of a congested area nor 50 metres near a person or anything manned from what I gather. Mind you that's all pointless without registration.
I misparsed things, apparently. I thought the "250g or more" clause was only in regards to licensing and there was no size clause attached to the "geofencing" portion.
To my understanding, the current "geofencing" configurations are optional and easily disabled, but this would make them mandatory and presumably difficult to disable. And my admittedly-cursory research on the issue turned up a few instances of glitched GPS implementations grounding drones in what should be clear-to-fly areas.
(I still think "geofencing" is a dumb word, but have no intention of fighting it beyond putting it in quotes.)
Not sure about that one, and my attempt to quickly Google an answer is thwarted by the fact that DJI and others have an optional feature also called 'geofencing' which allows the user to specify an area beyond which the drone won't wander.
This article from February, though, says that DJI's "Geospatial Environment Online" 'limits flights into or take-off within restricted locations unless you have a verified DJI account and evidence of authorisation which allows you to temporarily unlock these areas. Please note that the unlock function isn’t valid for areas classified as national-security locations.' So, in other words, DJI's GEO system cannot be disabled unless you have some form of authorisation which is accepted by DJI, and even then can't be disabled for areas designated as national security locations..
The same article says Yuneec has FAA No Fly Zone compliant geofencing (so, like DJI, it either can't be disabled or can only be disabled with appropriate authorisation) too.
Another unfortunate case of why we can't have nice things. Too many people out there doing downright idiotic things for measures like this not to be pushed forwards. Fingers crossed it will actually do something to curb perhaps not malicious use but purely irresponsible behaviour, else it's just another piece of frustrating tape.
Yup, it's a real shame that the RC aircraft & helicopter community has managed to self-regulate for decades without incident, and it's taken a scant few years for people with NEW TOY syndrome to ruin it for everyone.
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