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NASA building robot-controlled drone traffic network

With Google and Amazon unveiling their new drones, NASA has called for private partners to join its ambitious plan to create a low-altitude air traffic network over the US – that will be run without human traffic controllers – within 10 years. In a tender published on Wednesday, the agency’s Silicon Valley-based Ames Research Center encouraged “public, private, and academic organizations to collaborate with NASA to conduct Unmanned Aerial System (UAS) and UAS Traffic Management (UTM) research and development with the collective goal of safely enabling these operations at lower altitudes by UTM system.” The studies will focus on mapping out corridors and no-fly areas (like airfields) creating a collision detection system, and programming an algorithm that will allow drones to safely fly in hazardous conditions such as rain, and strong wind, which is a particular danger for such light objects. The move comes after two high-profile American companies decided to test their cutting-edge drones abroad, prompting criticism that domestic regulators were hampering the development of the technology. The initiative will seek to bring drones back over US soil. via RT USA.

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