Federal Drone Testing Is Coming to These 6 Scenic Locations

The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) just announced the six sites across the country that will host tests to see how drones could fly in the same skies as commercial aircraft. Naturally, geography, climate, safety and use of airspace were the decisive factors.

The lucky locations (and their specific assignments) are as follows:

  • University of Alaska (navigation and safety standards, including use of campuses in Hawaii and Oregon)
  • State of Nevada (air-traffic control)
  • New York's Griffiss International Airport (how drones will avoid collisions with commercial aircraft)
  • North Dakota Department of Commerce (airworthiness and pilot reliability)
  • Texas A&M (safety systems for drones)
  • Virginia Tech (technical risks for drones)

Testing will start up at one of these sites in the next six months giving the drone industry relatively little time to figure everything out before the end of 2015, when the process is supposed to conclude. Along those lines, many believe commercial drones won't really take to the skies until at least 2020. But hey, at least they'll do some good when they do! [USA Today]