Google, Amazon and Wal-Mart join FAA drone task force

The group faces a Nov. 20 deadline and is accepting public comments

Google, Amazon and Wal-Mart have joined the government's task force charged with figuring out a registration and identification system for drones.

The companies, all three of which are working on drone delivery systems, are among 25 members that have been asked to formulate recommendations by Nov. 20 on how such a registration system would work and what types of drones should be exempt. Their work will begin with a three-day meeting next week.

Unlike aircraft, drones are not subject to any registration process, but a rapid increase in the number of drones involved in dangerous incidents has prompted the Federal Aviation Administration and the U.S. Department of Transportation to act. With registration and identification, it's hoped airspace violators will be easier to identify and prosecute.

Dave Vos, who heads up drone activities at Google X, will co-chair the committee with Earl Lawrence, who leads the FAA’s UAS (unmanned aircraft systems) Integration Office.

At a NASA-run conference in Silicon Valley in July, Vos proposed that every drone, including those flown by hobbyists for pleasure, constantly transmit its identification and location so airspace access and collision avoidance can be managed by computer.

Dave Vos Martyn Williams

Dave Vos, head of Google's Project Wing, speaks at a drone conference at NASA Ames Research Center in Moffett Field, California, on July 29, 2015.

He envisioned drone users entering a flight plan and getting approval before any flight took place. It's a self-serving proposal, because Google wants a high degree of computer control so it can efficiently and quickly deliver packages via drone.

Vos proposed that drones use ADS-B, an existing identification and location broadcast system used on conventional aircraft. Google and other companies are working on low-cost ADS-B units for drones, but whether that will be a popular idea among other committee members and government representatives remains to be seen.

Other members include drone makers such as DJI, GoPro, PrecisionHawk and 3D Robotics, retailer Best Buy, several industry associations, and the Academy of Model Aeronautics, which represents the model aircraft community.

The panel will accept public comments and submissions through the government's Regulations.gov website.

Join the newsletter!

Or

Sign up to gain exclusive access to email subscriptions, event invitations, competitions, giveaways, and much more.

Membership is free, and your security and privacy remain protected. View our privacy policy before signing up.

Error: Please check your email address.

Tags Googleamazon.comdrones

Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

Martyn Williams

IDG News Service
Show Comments

Cool Tech

Toys for Boys

Family Friendly

Stocking Stuffer

SmartLens - Clip on Phone Camera Lens Set of 3

Learn more >

Christmas Gift Guide

Click for more ›

Brand Post

Most Popular Reviews

Latest Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Aysha Strobbe

Microsoft Office 365/HP Spectre x360

Microsoft Office continues to make a student’s life that little bit easier by offering reliable, easy to use, time-saving functionality, while continuing to develop new features that further enhance what is already a formidable collection of applications

Michael Hargreaves

Microsoft Office 365/Dell XPS 15 2-in-1

I’d recommend a Dell XPS 15 2-in-1 and the new Windows 10 to anyone who needs to get serious work done (before you kick back on your couch with your favourite Netflix show.)

Maryellen Rose George

Brother PT-P750W

It’s useful for office tasks as well as pragmatic labelling of equipment and storage – just don’t get too excited and label everything in sight!

Cathy Giles

Brother MFC-L8900CDW

The Brother MFC-L8900CDW is an absolute stand out. I struggle to fault it.

Luke Hill

MSI GT75 TITAN

I need power and lots of it. As a Front End Web developer anything less just won’t cut it which is why the MSI GT75 is an outstanding laptop for me. It’s a sleek and futuristic looking, high quality, beast that has a touch of sci-fi flare about it.

Emily Tyson

MSI GE63 Raider

If you’re looking to invest in your next work horse laptop for work or home use, you can’t go wrong with the MSI GE63.

Featured Content

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?