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To check use of UAVs by rogue elements to carry out terror attacks, the government is mulling to put in place a system to detect and defeat such threats and regulate low flying objects. Recently, Union Home Secretary, Mr. Rajiv Mehrishi said there was a need for regulating Unmanned Aerial Vehicles to prevent its misuse, particularly in populated areas and sensitive locations like airports. The Home Secretary said the process of detection and destruction of UAVs is an evolving process and experts are still working on it. He said putting in place certain regulations in operating UAVs have two aspects — preventive and enabling — and the government was working on both. He said the government was also exploring the option of using UAVs for works like surveillance in large establishments such as refineries, secure oil pipelines from being broken or stolen, crime detection etc. http://economictimes.indiatimes.com/
UK to use drone jammers to track UAV
The UK is set to use sophisticated dronejamming technology at major public and sporting events for detecting, tracking and disrupting the controls of any rogue as airborne weapons. According to ‘The Sunday Times’, a radar device was installed on the roof of New Scotland Yard headquarters of the Metropolitan police in London, close to Whitehall where World War commemoration event took place in early December. The equipment, made by a consortium of British firms and a more advanced version of the kit used by some celebrities to protect their privacy, is capable of detecting, tracking and disrupting the controls of any rogue drones flown remotely by terrorists as airborne weapons. It uses an electro-optical camera to track the drone before jamming the radio signals that control it, forcing it to land. http://economictimes.indiatimes.com/
Scientists have developed a new technology that can allow unmanned aerial vehicles (UAV) to manoeuvre safely in plateau mountain regions. The UAVs designed for plateau missions are usually installed with high span chord ratio wings, which provides more lifting force at a relatively low airspeed. The UAVs employ high span chord ratio wings, however, tend to lose their manoeuvrability. Hence, they usually need larger turning radius and are unable to maintain the altitude during sharp slope turning as the lifting force produced by the wings decrease dramatically when the bank angle is large. The discarding of the flight performances may risk the safety of the flight in plateau mountain regions. Variable thrust direction (VTD) technology is a type of thrust vectoring control (TVC) approach that allows to manipulate the directions of thrust to the fuselage of the aircraft.
The proposed variable thrust direction mechanism consists of a conventional propeller engine which is mounted on a two dimensional rotate disk driven by two servo actuators. By combining the linear motions of the actuator, both the azimuth and the altitude angle of the disk with respect to the fuselage can be controlled, and thus changing the thrust direction of the propeller. By the introduction of the VTD capability to the conventional propeller UAV, the manoeuvrability of the UAV has been greatly enhanced, since the VTD engine enables direct force control of the aircraft. http://economictimes.indiatimes.com/
Drone Liability Bill continues flying in senate
A proposal that would make owners of drones liable for the negligence of the aerial devices’ operators was revamped, but critics still say the measure could ground the industry’s growth in Florida, USA. The Senate Commerce and Tourism Committee voted 6-1 to support an amended proposal (SB 642) by Sen. Miguel Diaz de la Portilla, R-Miami, that would expand who could be sued when a drone causes damages.
He said the revamped measure is intended to focus more on small, toy-sized drones that may be loaned to other people for recreation, while letting courts determine how responsible the owners are when drones cause damage or harm to others.
In its place the proposal would now classify all drones weighing between 0.55 pounds and 55 pounds as a “dangerous instrumentality,” similar to a car or boat. http://miami.cbslocal.com
New SOPs for UAVs and RPASs
The Home Ministry in India is in the process of finalising new Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs) for UAVs and Remotely Piloted AircraftRPA) to secure India’s borders especially in the wake of recent terror attack in Pathankot. UAVs and RPA are used by Indian security and intelligence agencies for surveillance related works within the Indian air space. The Home Ministry will form new guidelines to help security forces guard the country’s frontiers. A meeting was held in the Ministry to discuss the provision of licensing for UAVs and RPA, adding that the role of a centralised agency for their licensing was also discussed. http://economictimes.indiatimes.com/
NHAI to use space technology, UAVs for highway projects
The government of India will use space technology and unmanned aerial vehicles to monitor and manage national highways and road assets. The National Highways Authority of India (NHAI) has signed MoU with the Indian Space Research Organization’s National Remote Sensing Centre and the North East Centre for Technology Application and Research for use of spatial technology. Satellite data and geospatial technology will be useful in providing inputs in highway and infrastructure projects for preparation of detailed project reports (DPR), prefeasibility status in new alignment, upgrade and road widening, monitoring of road segments under construction and the Road Asset Management System. http://economictimes.indiatimes.com/