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A System like Air Traffic Control to Manage Drones

Unmanned aerial vehicles (UAV), better known as ‘drones’, have gained mainstream status for quite some time now. However, the quandary of regulating their growing numbers has only recently begun to garner public attention. In the last few months, multiple incidents of drone-related aggravation and disruption have come in the limelight. Drone attacks on people, aircrafts being delayed or grounded due to drone activities and violation of drone bans are but a few examples.

According to the Federal Aviation Authority’s (FAA) announcement in early 2018, the number of registered drones was well over 1 million. Admittedly, a lion’s share of this number included mere hobbyists. However, the agency further predicts that the number of commercial drones will quadruple by 2022. Thanks to the rising ubiquity of drones in wide-ranging domains such as agriculture, meteorology, traffic control, deliveries and urban planning.

As drones become increasingly congruent with civilian life, systems for organizing a sky full of drones seem absolutely vital

Organizing and Understanding a Drone-filled Airspace is the Need of the Hour

Although numerous companies have come up with unique ways for managing the drone ecosystem, few have been exhaustive enough. Only a unified approach promises to address the challenge of managing benign drones, while tackling the malicious ones. The starting point for this would be a firm data layer using radar detection systems. This would help regulators determine the nature and locations of airborne entities.
With drones set to become a US$100+ billion market, the sooner we have the data, the better baseline we have for the future.

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