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Drone test flights surveying wildlife start in Alaska: FAA

General May 5, 2014

By Ros Krasny WASHINGTON (Reuters) – The second of six U.S. test sites chosen to perform unmanned aircraft systems, or drone research started operations on Monday in Alaska, surveying wildlife, the U.S. Federal Aviation Administration said. The University of Alaska in Fairbanks was give a two-year authorization for animal surveys using an Aeryon Scout small drone built by Canada’s Aeryon Labs. The program “includes a diverse set of test site range locations in seven climatic zones, so it will give us a wealth of data to help develop appropriate safety regulations and standards,” FAA Administrator Michael Huerta said. The Aeryon Scout is a tiny aircraft that weighs 3 pounds (1.4 kg) without payload, performs vertical takeoffs and landings and requires no launch equipment.

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