Sunday, February 28, 2016

Drones, Safety and Restrictions: Aerial Drones Banned Without Specific Ski Area Owner Permission

Jeanette DeForge at headlines that Ski areas banning drones in Massachusetts, New Hampshire, Vermont unless an operator has specific permission from the ski area owners.

In our private discussions with recreational consumer drone enthusiasts, we have said from the very beginning that the law has been much too slow to adopt sensible regulations governing consumer drone use and operation, a delay which has led to unnecessary dangers and misunderstandings. In the U.S.A. alone, 700000 drones were sold last year. Rather than the laggards in Congress working to obstruct or to shut down the government, they should long ago have worked out comprehensive overall drone regulation legislation.

We think it is inevitable that drone operators in the future will have to obtain a government-defined drone use license and in the course of doing so will have to take a course in drone piloting and operation, including the obtaining of thorough knowledge of the dangers that drones can pose to individuals and to the public as well as a clear understanding of where drones can be operated and where not, and whether drone-made aerial photos and videos can or can not be published in print or posted online, and the extent of and reasons for any restrictions that are said to apply.

Ultimately, drone makers will have to install software and hardware that incorporates maps of no fly zones and makes it impossible for drones to enter such zones, e.g. airspace near airports, certain kinds of public and private property, etc.

This is a cross-posting from LawPundit.

Wednesday, February 24, 2016

Yuneec Typhoon H With Sonar Can Be Ordered with Expected Delivery in April

Things have moved faster than we expected with Yuneec's sonar drone.

The Yuneec Typhoon H consumer drone with sonar is upcoming in the drone universe. See the video at Yuneec Typhoon H. in Germany has the option to pre-order the Yuneec Typhoon H for expected delivery in April at a price of €1799, but nothing comparable was found yet at

Addendum: We found three versions of the Yuneec Typhoon H being offered on a pre-order basis at, with the highest price at €2199 and the lowest at  €1499.

The above are not paid-for ads, but merely information.

Intel (TM) Real Sense (TM) Technology, AscTec and Yuneec, and the Future of the Drone Universe

You may wonder what we are doing posting so much about drones -- but drone technology will be an integral part of the world of the future and it is coming sooner than you think, once the legal and regulatory aspects have been settled.

Intel (R) "Real Sense" (TM) Technology is the new kid on the block and it is spectacular for what it will be bringing to the drone universe in terms of  "Real Sense" cameras combined with Intel CPU computing power.

See CNET Gadget News and the article by Carrie Mihalcik at Intel wants to do for drones what it did for PCs: The chipmaker acquires German drone company Ascending Technologies as it expands to technology beyond the PC. "AscTec" is a maker of high-tech drones for professional use.

See the CES 2016 video of Intel CEO Brian Krzanich showing an intelligent professional AscTec drone outfitted with Intel's "Real Sense" technology in action, especially at the end in navigating through a thick forest. See video.

Intel has also invested in consumer drone manufacturer Yuneec (pronounced "unique") in China, a Chinese aircraft manufacturer with a futuristic not yet released "intelligent" CES-exhibited Yuneec drone that incorporates Intel's "Real Sense" technology into its drone camera and navigation system and can, for example, navigate around trees and other objects. See the video.

The release date of this drone technology to the consumer public is unknown, but we imagine that this new Yuneec will initially be quite pricey, so that the recently released Yuneec Typhoon Q500 4k quadrotor vz. quadcopter and variants of that drone still look good to us in terms of being DJI competitors.

Be that as it may, Intel's involvement seems destined to propel Yuneec into a "unique" position in drone manufacture very soon down the road.

Tuesday, February 23, 2016

368472 Drones Registered by FAA February 19 Deadline and They Outnumber Planes

368472 drones have been registered by the U.S. Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) in meeting the February 19, 2016 agency deadline.

Drone registrations far outnumber planes.
One registration can cover multiple drones.

The story is reported in
Newly Registered Drones Outnumber Planes
by Matthew Rocco at Fox Business.

Best 4k Camera Drones : DJI, Yuneec and 3DR – Which to Buy?

See at Drones for Sale with 4k Cameras | Best Quadcopter Reviews.

Best Drone List from MyFirstDrone

Looking to buy your first drone and need to know where to start? Korey Smith at MyFirstDrone has an updated February 2016 List of Best Drones For Sale.

First Time Buyers Should Know Five Things Before Buying a Drone

MyFirstDrone has a USEFUL piece for first-time drone buyers on
5 Things You Should Know Before You Buy a Drone.

Monday, February 22, 2016

The Legal Difference Between Camera-Based FPV (First Person View) Drone Flight and Line-Of-Sight Drone Flying

Mark LaFay in Drone Flight Modes For Dummies has a take on the legal difference in the United States between "line-of-sight" drone flying and "first person view" (FPV) drone flying using a camera and a viewing screen to (help) pilot a drone.

LaFay writes that: "The FAA hasn’t placed an official ban on FPV flying, but the law specifically says that if you are hobby flying, you must fly line-of-sight. That said, if your drone offers FPV flight mode and you want to limit your risk of potentially getting busted, you should fly out in the middle of nowhere."

As regards specific laws and regulations applicable to drones in the U.S.A., we refer to a professional view at Current U.S. Drone Law by Peter Sachs at the Drone Law Journal and to our previous LawPundit posting at FAA Announces Mandatory Drone Registration Effective Virtually Immediately ! Get it Done !

The restricted legal status of FPV flying explains in part why "FPV drones" are less frequently offered commercially (for now) than "line-of-sight drones".

Two other reasons for the dominance of line-of-sight drones on the market is of course that FPV camera drones are much more expensive and because the added weight of a proper camera and apparatus cuts down on flying time.

Persons such as myself are, however, not so interested in having a camera on board to help "pilot" the drone as such -- as opposed to using line-of sight for general piloting.

However, we ARE interested in using a camera-enabled FPV drone to better place it in the air in order to make aerial photographs of ancient megalithic or other very old archaeological sites from directly above the megaliths, mounds, earthworks, etc.

Our pre-drone-era models in that regard are some books about prehistoric Britain from the air, which used photographs made from other flight vehicles other than drones. There is much to be done here now in the drone era as regards, e.g. megalithic sites. It is a new aspect in archaeological-type work.

Quanum Nova FPV GPS Waypoint QuadCopter in HobbyKing Video

We were impressed with a video of the Quanum Nova FPV GPS Waypoint QuadCopter which is linked at at

The Drone Racing League Premieres First Official Race of 2016 Season, Level 1 : Miami Lights, at Sun Life Stadium, Home of the MIami Dolphins

We pass this press release on to those who are interested in drone racing.


Three-Part Video Series Documenting The First Race from Sun Life Stadium

NEW YORK (February 22, 2016) – Today, The Drone Racing League (DRL) announced the worldwide premier of its highly anticipated first race, Level 1: Miami Lights. Set in the iconic Sun Life Stadium, home of the Miami Dolphins, DRL’s first race of the 2016 season documents the incredible skill of twelve of the greatest drone pilots on the planet racing the custom built DRL Racer 2 drone at speeds in excess of 80 MPH around the complex three dimensional course. The race will air as the first episode of a three part series, available today at at noon ET.

“This is an incredibly exciting day for DRL,” said DRL CEO and Founder Nicholas Horbaczewski. “Following our launch in January, fans around the world have been eagerly awaiting the debut of this first race. Level 1: Miami Lights will showcase the best content ever captured at a drone racing event, and the remarkable skill of the pilots will be accessible for the first time to a global audience.”

The race will be aired as a three part series, with individual episodes featuring the qualifying, semi-finals and finals, following pilots as they race against elimination. Episode 1 focuses on the Qualifying Round, with 12 pilots battling across three heats for the most points. DRL events are scored with pilots earning 50 points each for passing two checkpoints and finishing the course, and 10 points for every second they finish under the two-minute time cap. The top 8 pilots move to the Semi-Finals, and only 4 advance to the Finals. More on DRL scoring can be found here: DRL Race Scoring.

To watch the first event, tune in to at noon ET. The full schedule of Level 1: Miami Lights episode air-dates:

      February 22: Episode 1 (Qualifying) featuring 12 of the world’s best drone racing pilots.
      February 29: Episode 2 (Semi-Finals) featuring the 8 pilots advancing from qualifying.
      March 7: Episode 3 (Finals, Championship) featuring top four pilots racing to win Level 1.


For Level 1, pilots traveled from four different countries to test their skills on the most challenging drone racing course ever created. To learn more about the 12 pilots competing at the Level 1: Miami Lights race, click here: DRL Standing and Pilot Profiles. For an overview of the 3D, kilometer long course through Sunlife Stadium, watch this video: Level 1: Miami Lights Course Animation.


Along with the first race, DRL also announced today a new level of the DRL FPV Simulator. The simulator, which can be downloaded here, gives fans at home a chance to try their skill on an animated course of the exact track pilots raced in Miami. 


With six key events in 2016, DRL will enlist elite drone pilots from around the globe to compete in the world’s most complex and unique courses. The next DRL race will take place in Los Angeles in March, and air online in April.

For more information on the 2016 race season, visit To join the conversation, follow DRL on Facebook at, on Twitter @DroneRaceLeague, and on Instagram @thedroneracingleague.


DRL is the premier drone racing league. A sports and media company, DRL combines world-class flight skill and proprietary technology to create engaging drone racing content with mass appeal. In 2016 DRL will launch a global events series culminating in a World Championship. Founded by Nicholas Horbaczewski in 2015, DRL is a privately held company headquartered in NYC.


Ben Johnson, Head of Communications, DRL

Ashton Stronks
Public Relations
LeadDog Marketing Group, Inc.
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Drone Inquiries at Google Trends Show Rising Interest Profile Over Time

Drone inquiries at Google Trends show a rising profile of interest over time with a peak of course at Christmas time because of drone gifts as toys.

Archaeological drones at Computational Archaeology

Computational Archaeology has a piece on
Archaeological drones.

Thursday, February 18, 2016

Where Can You Fly Your Drone?

CNET has a short video (preceded by an ad) about
where you can fly your drone.

Crop-Dusting Ag Drones In California Vineyards

Jie Ma and Yuki Hagiwara at Bloomberg Businessweek

in Will Drones Become the Toast of Napa?

report that

"Yamaha is bringing its unmanned crop-dusters to U.S. vineyards".

Drone Universe is a Blog about Aerial Drones and Drone Photography, Mapping and Surveying

Drone Universe is a blog
about aerial drones, drone photography, mapping and surveying.

We hope to post drone photos & videos (viz. links to them) here in the future, especially aerial drone photos and videos of megalithic sites around the world.

As an adjunct to this blog, we have created a photo group at Flickr at

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