Gary Mortimer's Posts (323)

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uAvionix, designer and manufacturer of communications, navigation, and surveillance (CNS) equipment for unmanned and manned aircraft today announced a partnership with CubePilot (ProfiCNC and Hex) designer and manufacturer of the world leading “The Cube” autopilot (Formerly known as “Pixhawk”) for unmanned aircraft systems (UAS) – to integrate ADS-B IN receive capability into its Carrier Board.

The new Carrier Board, available in July this year, integrates uAvionix’s custom ADS-B silicon for 1090MHz ADS-B reception for worldwide Detect and Avoid (DAA) functionality. CubePilot, which Proudly uses the open-source ARDUPILOT platform, previously provided plug-and-play functionality for several uAvionix ADS-B IN and OUT products, including PingRXPing2020i and Ping1090i. Support for these products is retained in the new design, allowing for 978MHz ADS-B reception or integration of ADS-B OUT functionality.

With this integration, UAS operators will be able to see nearby ADS-B OUT enabled aircraft on ARDUPILOT’s Mission Planner, allowing the remote pilot in command (RPIC) with timely notification to take the necessary actions to remain well clear.

“With this partnership, uAvionix furthers our goal of ensuring safety and common situational awareness between airspace users,” states Christian Ramsey, uAvionix President. “We believe that ADS-B IN functionality should be a requirement for every DAA system for UAS operations over people or Beyond Visual Line of Sight, and that meeting that requirement should not be cost prohibitive.”

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I am sure most folks here would know how to do this, the more I play with the Sky Viper the more impressed I am with its potential as a lead into the world of Ardupilot and yesterday even UTM's

The official hacking thread is here.

It seems to be available in the USA primarily at the moment with some spots having them for $125.

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The FAA have just issued a NOTAM and interactive map. It really might not be a good idea to be caught in any of the 133 new restricted areas

The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) has established airspace restrictions over 133 military facilities to address national security concerns about unauthorized drone operations. The specific restricted locations are detailed in a Notice to Airmen (NOTAM) – UAS NOTAM FDC 7/7137, and may be viewed online via an interactive map here.

The Agency is using its existing authority under Title 14 of the Code of Federal Regulations (14 CFR) § 99.7 – Special Security Instructions – to establish these restrictions. The relief provided under § 99.7 is limited to requests from the Department of Defense and U.S. federal security and intelligence agencies based on national security interests.

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Swift Navigation, the San Francisco-based startup building centimeter-accurate GPS technology that will power a world of autonomous vehicles, is proud to announce that two of its co-founders, Fergus Noble (29) and Colin Beighley (28), have been honoured in the 2017 Forbes 30 Under 30 Consumer Technology listThe list, which honours 30 young leaders in each of 20 different industries, is “the world’s greatest roll call of young entrepreneurs and game-changers,” according to Forbes. Acceptance into its consumer tech list is less than 4%, making it more competitive than getting into elite universities like Stanford or Harvard.

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Jordi made that the same year as the Lily folks...

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sUAS News Guide, Q3 update


Another quarter of the year has flown by (yes, I just did that) and there is no shortage of new drones milling about the skies of this blue marble.

Q3 Update – October 2016 –

Gary, Editor of sUAS News, recently mentioned that in his neck of the woods, and besides his own fleet of UAS, there are now at least four Phantoms flying around his vicinity that he knows about. This might seem quite the dull acknowledgement at first glance (it being dull in itself says something), but when one considers that his neck of the woods is quite a rural-middle-of-nowhere-amongst-the-rolling-hills-and-some-mountains of central eastern South Africa, it may not be so dull after all. As Gary quite rightly put it, “the drone age is really here”.

In this sUAS Guide update, we continue showing some interesting commercial and non-profit uses of drones operating in everyday life as well as in exceptional circumstances. sUAS News was also fortunate enough to be invited to see first hand a new electric/liquid-fuel hybrid VTOL UAS called the ALTi Transition on one of its final test flight days before production begins. This particular UAS is a great example of high-quality not-from-the-defence-industry industrial grade UAS beginning to show up on the market and further showing how far along the civilian industry has come from “home-built” once-off-suited-for-a-single-purpose type systems.

With the continued minification of high grade sensors and other hardware, manufacturers are now able to design and build high quality and affordable (relative to defence industry systems) industrial grade UAS to are fill a rapidly growing demand in sectors such as mining, OGP (oil, gas, petroleum) and law enforcement, to name but a few. Another tick mark in the “the drone age is here” column.

Don’t forget to subscribe to sUAS Guide to get notified when new issues are published. If you have any questions, feel free to email me via

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In the USA.... Be careful after Monday


Of course, you are always careful you are a DIYD member.

We are all aware of Part 107 coming in next Monday. The very simple test that will allow folks to fly commercially. Less is being said about Part 101, the bit that affects all other model aircraft fliers. If after Monday you don't have a Part 107 ticket, that's you. I speak with Loretta Alkalay ex-FAA legal she was there 30 years.

If you listen it's not just Monday either, they can come after you retrospectively. The grey area in which folks have been flying has been coloured in. 

There are things going on in the background to address some of the issues that are coming up but just be careful of any FPV you post or log files that demonstrate BVLOS flight.

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sUAS Guide #2 - Its free!


As the first half of 2016 screams into the rear view mirror, sUAS News brings you sUAS Guide Issue 2. Lots of happenings in the last few weeks including the FAA finalizing the Part 107 ‘small UAS Rule’, which we will see come into effect in August this year. A great step forward to foster the growth of more commercial small UAS businesses in the USA.

Issue 2 – July 2016

In this edition we bring you insights on Part 107 from experienced folks in the industry, as well as the same on the business and technologies side of things. Thank you to all those who contributed to this issue!

We hope you enjoy reading the material as much as we did. Don’t forget to subscribe to sUAS Guide to get notified when new issues are published. If you have any questions, feel free to email Tiaan :-

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Part 107 lives, the starting gun has fired.

Today, the Department of Transportation’s Federal Aviation Administration has finalized the first operational rules for routine commercial use of small unmanned aircraft systems (UAS or “drones”), opening pathways towards fully integrating UAS into the nation’s airspace. These new regulations work to harness new innovations safely, to spur job growth, advance critical scientific research and save lives.

“We are part of a new era in aviation, and the potential for unmanned aircraft will make it safer and easier to do certain jobs, gather information, and deploy disaster relief,” said U.S. Transportation Secretary Anthony Foxx. “We look forward to working with the aviation community to support innovation, while maintaining our standards as the safest and most complex airspace in the world.”

According to industry estimates, the rule could generate more than $82 billion for the U.S. economy and create more than 100,000 new jobs over the next 10 years.

The new rule, which takes effect in late August, offers safety regulations for unmanned aircraft drones weighing less than 55 pounds that are conducting non-hobbyist operations.

Of course we all knew this was coming today, welll sort of knew.

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Speaking today at a conference in New Orleans, FAA Administrator Michael Huerta announced the agency is establishing a broad-based advisory committee that will provide advice on key unmanned aircraft integration issues. He also announced plans to make it easier for students to fly unmanned aircraft (PDF) as part of their coursework.

Huerta said the drone advisory committee is an outgrowth of the successful stakeholder-based UAS registration task force and the MicroUAS aviation rulemaking committee.

Those panels were set up for a single purpose and for limited duration. In contrast, the drone advisory committee is intended to be a long-lasting group. It will help identify and prioritize integration challenges and improvements, and create broad support for an overall integration strategy.

“Input from stakeholders is critical to our ability to achieve that perfect balance between integration and safety,” Huerta said. “We know that our policies and overall regulation of this segment of aviation will be more successful if we have the backing of a strong, diverse coalition.”

Huerta said he has asked Intel CEO Brian Krzanich to chair the group.

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Clash of the Titans, DJI sue Yuneec


DJI, the world’s leading maker of unmanned aerial vehicle (“UAV”) and camera technology, Friday filed a patent infringement lawsuit against Yuneec International Co. Ltd. and Yuneec USA, Inc. in the United States District Court for the Central District of California.

The complaint asserts that Yuneec’s products and technology infringe two DJI patents and seeks injunctive relief to halt the further sale of the infringing Yuneec products and systems.

DJI’s complaint alleges that Yuneec’s UAV products infringe one or more claims of DJI’s U.S. Patent Numbers 9,164,506, titled “Systems and methods for target tracking,” and 9,280,038, titled “Interchangeable Mounting Platform.”

DJI has invested a substantial amount of resources over the course of nearly a decade into the research and development of UAVs.  This investment has generated technology that is fundamental to the future of the UAV and related industrial applications.

DJI welcomes competition, but is committed to protecting its intellectual property. Friday’s filing is a response to safeguard that investment, to protect customers and partners and to promote genuine innovation in this promising area.

DJI holds hundreds of patents worldwide, including at least 30 issued in the U.S. and has at least 50 applications pending there. DJI offers state-of-the-art products and solutions for aerial photography, cinematography, remote tracking and monitoring, geological surveying, and many other commercial, personal, and industrial applications for professionals and hobbyists in the fields of journalism, filmmaking, emergency services, industrial equipment and road monitoring, and many others.

DJI is represented by the law firm of Wilson Sonsini Goodrich & Rosati, P.C.

Contact: Adam Lisberg, DJI North America Communications Director,

More comment and the full complaint here

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Chris Anderson to speak at sUSB Expo 2016


Its the Silicon Valley Drone show time of year again looking forward to meeting old friends and making new. The first commercial (all the rest were military/tiny bit of private before) drone show in America makes it to year four. 

Here's the line up so far.

Chris Anderson, CEO 3D Robotics founder DIY Drones

Chris is the CEO of 3D Robotics and founder of DIY Drones. From 2001 through 2012 he was the Editor in Chief of Wired Magazine. Before Wired he was with The Economist for seven years in London, Hong Kong and New York in various positions, ranging from Technology Editor to US Business Editor.

He is the author of the New York Times bestselling books The Long Tail and Free as well as the new Makers: The New Industrial Revolution.  In 2007 he was named in “Time 100,” the news magazine’s list of the 100 most influential men and women in the world. View Complete Bio…


Jeffery Antonelli

Jeffery Antonelli, Antonelli Law

Jeffrey Antonelli launched one of the first Drone/UAS Practice Groups in the country in 2014 after discovering drone technology in his RC aircraft hobby. The practice has now grown to more than 50 clients nationwide including billion dollar engineering, construction, and telecom concerns, GIS professionals, cinematographers, real estate companies, a news organization, and a forensic specialist. In addition to providing Section 333 and Public COA services, with the firm advises clients on complex aviation needs, digital privacy, tax, contracts, intellectual property, employment law and civil litigation. This is made possible in large part due to his co-counsel Kate Fletcher, attorney and pilot for the world’s largest airline; Washington DC regulatory and telecommunications attorney Mark Del Bianco; and aviation consultant Douglas Marshall. View Complete Bio…


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Micahael Chambliss, International Cinematographers Guild

Michael Chambliss is a technologist and business representative for the for the International Cinematographers Guild (ICG), IATSE Local 600, focused on new production technologies impacting directors of photography and their camera crews. He has been working closely with FAA-exempt UAS motion picture and television aerial operators, regulatory agencies, insurers, the motion picture and television Industry Wide Safety Committee, industry guilds, and community based UAS groups to implement this technology as new visual storytelling technique. View Complete Bio…



Goksel Dedoglu, PercepTonic

Goksel is the Founder and Lab Director of PercepTonic, his Dallas-based startup where he formulates embedded vision solutions for next-gen products. Thanks to the Robotics Institute at Carnegie Mellon and seven years with Texas Instruments’ R&D labs, Goksel is a recognized expert in Computer Vision with patents and product contributions in automotive safety, video analytics, face and gesture recognition, and augmented reality. View Complete Bio…

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Marke F. Gibson Senior Advisor, Unmanned Aircraft Systems Integration

In September 2015, Marke Gibson joined the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) as the Senior Advisor, Unmanned Aircraft Systems (UAS) Integration. He provides executive direction and high level leadership to the FAA with responsibility for oversight of the work related to UAS. In addition, he is responsible for developing and delivering business and strategic plans for enterprise-level UAS initiatives, analyzing integration progress, engaging in scientific and research activities, and maintaining liaison with internal and external stakeholders.
Prior to joining the FAA, Mr. Gibson served as the Executive Director of the NextGen Institute (NGI). The primary role of NGI is to provide a mechanism through which the private sector actively engages with the USG in defining, developing, and implementing NextGen. In that position, he promoted the NextGen Institute throughout the industry, created awareness and gained new support for NextGen initiatives. During his tenure at NGI, he led two UAS Spectrum working groups, an FAA Global Leadership Roundtable, and commenced work on an ADS-B initiative on behalf of the Deputy Administrator.View Complete Bio…



Heller Gregory

Heller Gregory, GrandView Services

Heller Gregory is the founder and president of Bay Area based GrandView Services, LLC. GrandView is one of Northern California’s first UAV companies focused on data acquisition and processing for civil engineering, geotechnical, heavy construction, and environmental monitoring. Ms. Gregory is a licensed private pilot who has been involved in digital imaging and communications for more than 25 years and with the civil, geotechnical, and earthwork construction industry for more than 20 years. View Complete Bio…

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Tero Heinonen, Sharper Shape, Finland

Tero, founder and CEO of Sharper Shape, is an entrepreneurial and experienced start-up executive with a successful track record and experience from international high tech business management, sales and technology management with excellent industry knowledge of several industries, and target-driven hands-on attitude. Tero has co-founded 5 technology companies, where he has served as CEO and/or Chairman. Since 2000 Tero has been focused solely on startups, including Maventa Ltd (exit 2013), Uoma Oy (exit 2010), Tema Networks Ltd, Helmi Technologies Inc., CargoTrax Ltd, BLStream Ltd, Locus Portal Corp. (exit 2004), Synapse, and Optiwise Inc. Before startups Tero worked in business development at Stonesoft Corp (IPO 1999) and in business management at Tekla Corp. Tero started his career as a software developer in 1986. View Complete Bio…

Michael Perry Photo

Michael Perry, Director of Strategic Partnerships DJI

Michael Perry is Director of Strategic Partnerships of DJI and leads external outreach on behalf of the company. Since joining DJI in early 2014, he has helped engage industry leaders across multiple sectors, top tier global media and international government partners to understand the potential of unmanned aerial technology. His work also includes identifying and engaging partners to help expand the capabilities of unmanned aerial systems through new hardware or software solutions.

Before joining DJI, Michael served as a communications strategist at global public relations consultancies, advising Fortune 500 companies on corporate communications, media relations, public affairs, and thought leadership programs across North and South America, Europe and Asia. View Complete Bio…



Parimal Kopardekar, NASA NextGen Concepts and Technology Development Project

Parimal Kopardekar (PK) serves as the Manager of the NASA’s NextGen Concepts and Technology Development Project. He has published more than 40 articles. He enjoys initiating new concepts and technology ideas that increase airspace capacity and throughput, reduce delays, and reduce the total cost of air transportation. View Complete Bio…

Tad McGeer

Tad McGeer, Aerovel

Tad McGeer is Aerovel’s founder and president. He trained as an aeronautical engineer at Princeton and Stanford, and then joined the new Engineering Science faculty at Simon Fraser University in his native British Columbia. There he developed the concept of passive dynamic walking, which went on to be adopted as a paradigm for study of human locomotion and design of legged robots. In 1990 he returned to aeronautics, joining a Virginia start-up, Aurora Flight Sciences, as Chief Scientist. View Complete Bio…


Terry Miller 2016

Terry Miller, President of Transport Risk Management, Inc. and Unmanned Risk Management

Terry founded Transport Risk Management in 2003 because he recognized the opportunity to innovate an industry and do things better than they were being done.
Transport Risk is a pioneer in the field of UAS insurance and has developed many systems unique to UAS insurance including an innovative aircraft registration system and insurance quote submission and policy management systems. View Complete Bio…

Knut Torbjørn Moe

Knut Torbjørn Moe, Squarehead Technology

Mr. Moe, a Norwegian citizen, directs drone detection solutions at Squarehead Technology in Oslo. The company has delivered premium audio detection solutions for customers worldwide since 2004. He has managed multiple industrial and law enforcement drone projects in North America, Southern Africa, Middle East, Europe, The Arctic and Scandinavia, and has dealt with risk analysis and capability mapping of drones for the last decade. He is also an accredited drone operator on various systems, and an expert of counter drone tactics and systems. View Complete Bio…



Nicholas Pilkington, DroneDeploy

Nicholas Pilkington grew up in South Africa. He studied Machine Learning at the University of Cambridge. He also worked at Toshiba on speech recognitions system and Base4 on nanopore gene sequencers. He co-founded DroneDeploy in 2013 to make drones productive and accessible to everyone in the world. View Complete Bio…

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Maj. Gen. James O. Poss (ret), USAF, ASSURE

Maj. Gen. James O. Poss (ret) is the Executive Director of the Alliance for System Safety of UAS through Research Excellence (ASSURE) Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) Unmanned Aerial Systems (UAS) Center of Excellence Team. ASSURE is 18 of the top US, Canadian and British UAS research universities with 100+ corporate members teaming to solve the FAA’s UAS research issues. General Poss works for MSU at their Stennis Space Center Campus. He is a 30 year US Air Force veteran with combat experience in four wars and was the Air Force’s senior career intelligence officer at his transition from active service in November 2012. He is a leading expert on UAS, having targeted the first armed UAS strikes, designed the US Air Force’s remote split operations system for UAS control and the Distributed Common Ground Station for UAS intelligence analysis. General Poss received his commission through the Reserve Officer Training Corps program at the University of Southern Mississippi. View Complete Bio…



Gene Robinson, RP Search Services

Gene Robinson has continued on the same path of learning that started back in 2005 with the first search using a small unmanned aircraft.  Since his book “First to Deploy” has been released, Robinson has served the community by developing procedures and using his field experience to guide the growth of UA technology for first responders and Search & Rescue organizations. View Complete Bio…



Colin Snow, CEO Drone Analyst Research and Advisors

Colin Snow is CEO and Founder of Drone Analyst Research and Advisors, a consulting firm for the commercial unmanned aerial systems (UAS) industry. Colin is a 25-year technology industry veteran with a background in market research, enterprise software, electronics, digital imaging, and mobility. His experience includes aerial photography as well as making, programming, and piloting remote control aircraft. Colin holds an MBA from Florida Atlantic University and is a member of all major UAS industry groups including: AUVSI, RCAPA, and AMA. Colin writes the ‘The Market’ column for sUAS News, and you can find him on Twitter @droneanalyst. View Complete Bio…


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Andy von Stauffenberg, Founder & CEO, VStar Systems Inc.

Andy von Stauffenberg is the founder and CEO of VStar Systems Inc. VStar Systems Inc. provides End to End Unmanned Systems Research and Development Services to both commercial and government clients. Prior to establishing VStar Systems, Mr. von Stauffenberg was the Global Hawk Block 30 Chief Engineer at Northrop Grumman, overseeing all technical aspects of the product life cycle, including the development, production and sustainment efforts for the United States Air Force. Mr. von Stauffenberg has years of remote sensing, systems engineering, flight operations, system test and project management experience across a wide range of applications, advanced technologies and platforms. Mr. von Stauffenberg served eight years in the US Navy in various positions. He holds a BS and MBA from Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University in addition to a Master of Engineering in Systems Engineering degree from Stevens Institute of Technology.
View Complete Bio…

Michael Thoss

Micahel Thoss, Ethoss, Germany

Michael Thoss, is a trusted expert within his home country Germany and in the global, commercial unmanned industry. Being involved since 2008, Michael actively joined the industry representing the German manufacturer microdrones. As microdrones Marketing Director, Michael successfully developed, positioned and established the brand on the international commercial drone market and also was responsible for (the growth of) the global distribution network. Moving on, Michael founded his own company called “ethoss”. The company is regularly helping drone industry businesses and supports with strategic consulting and marketing services next to its extensive global network. Michael consults with established, global organizations, which look for his advice in order to successfully implement unmanned technology within their organization and operations. Michael actively is involved in drone operations and projects around the world, for both, security and commercial applications. During the last years, the main focus was clearly set to Europe, Middle East, South Africa and North-America. Currently, Michael is in the process of founding further businesses, related to the unmanned industry. View Complete Bio…

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Mass market RTK from uBlox


 u-blox (SIX:UBXN), a global leader in wireless and positioning modules and chips, launched today the NEO-M8P GNSS receiver modules, which are compatible with both the GPS and GLONASS satellite-based navigation systems and deliver high performance down to centimeter-level accuracy.

Measuring merely 12.2 x 16 x 2.4 mm3, NEO-M8P is the smallest high precision GNSS RTK (real time kinematic) module available on the market. The u-blox rover (NEO-M8P-0) receives corrections from the u-blox base receiver (NEO-M8P-2) via a communication link that uses the RTCM (Radio Technical Commission for Maritime Services) protocol, enabling centimeter-level positioning accuracy. The RTK algorithms are pre-integrated into the module. As a result, the size and weight are significantly reduced, and power consumption is five times lower than existing solutions, thus cutting costs and improving usability dramatically. Customers can further reduce their R&D efforts, as they do not have to spend significant resources and time to develop an in-house host-based RTK solution.

RTK technologies have been used for some time in low-volume niche markets, such as surveying and construction. Due to high costs and complexity, this enhanced positioning technology has been inaccessible for most other uses. Emerging high volume markets, such as unmanned vehicles, require high precision performance that is energy-efficient and low in costs. Other application areas include agriculture and robotic guidance systems, such as robotic lawnmowers. The u-blox NEO-M8P answers these demands for a small-sized, highly cost-effective, and very precise RTK-based module solution.

Full release here 

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