them attainable for commercial businesses and the general population. This
has led to a growing debate surrounding
regulations of their use, particularly as
it relates to the safety and privacy of the
surrounding UAS usage
Currently, the use of UAS in commercial
applications is only allowed with an exemption from the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) under Section 333 of
the FAA Modernization and Reform Act
of 2012 (FMRA).
The FAA is developing the regulatory
framework on a five-year roadmap to
Unmanned Aerial Systems (UAS) are becoming increas- ingly more attractive for use in commercial applications,
particularly for property review and inspection; however, there are challenges
that need to be overcome before it becomes standard operating procedure. The
first is just understanding the terminology.
Is it a drone, a UAV or a UAS?
The answer can be somewhat complex.
From a strict definition, a drone is an
unmanned aircraft that does not have
a human in control while flying. Most
military drones are very large and built
for surveillance and reconnaissance, but
by the strict definition they require hu-
man interaction, so technically they are
not drones. They are unmanned aircraft
of which the most well-known is prob-
ably the Predator. With a wing span of 49
feet and overall length of 27 feet, it takes a
tremendous amount of training to oper-
ate and requires direct involvement from
highly skilled pilots.
Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAV) are
aircraft controlled by an operator on the
ground. An Unmanned Aerial System
(UAS) is the entire system — aircraft,
controller, camera systems and software.
The evolution of technology surrounding
UAVs has resulted in the development of
small vehicles at a price point that makes
By Randall Ishikawa