Drone Parachute Program Validated at Griffiss Airport

July 8, 2020

NUAIR (Northeast UAS Airspace Integration Research Alliance, Inc.) and the New York UAS Test Site at Griffiss International Airport in Rome have validated a drone parachute recovery system for Aerial Vehicle Safety Solutions, Inc. (AVSS), it was announced Tuesday in a statement.

The parachute recovery system is a safety product for drones that automatically deploys a parachute if the drone malfunctions in the air, the statement said. AVSS said this is the third parachute standard validation it performed and the first in the DJI M200 series.

The Federal Aviation Association does not allow drones to be flown directly over people, but professional drone operators can apply for a waiver if they can provide safety plans, including a parachute system, the statement said.

"This whole industry is based around safety," said Tony Basile, chief operations officer at NUAIR said in a statement. "Unlocking the full capabilities of commercial drone use is dependent on the continued development of these safety standards and having a place where companies can have their product validated to those standards. I was happy to work with Josh and the AVSS crew early on to make sure they knew what was expected of them and their product for multiple days of testing, helping to assure a positive outcome."

According to the statement, the AVSS safety system is more than a parachute and includes a combination of software, hardware and a parachute system. If a drone malfunctions in the air the program will cut power to the drone and deploy a parachute that will allow the drone to slowly descend from the air.

NUAIR manages the FAA-designated New York UAS Test Site at Griffiss and is owned by Oneida County, the statement said. NUAIR put the AVSS parachute product through 45 functionality tests across five different scenarios, the statement said.

"Oneida County's UAS Test Site continues to be a place where collaboration leads to unparalleled industry advancement," Oneida County Executive Anthony J. Picente Jr. said in a statement. "Partnerships like the one fostered by NUAIR and AVSS are forging the future of commercial drone package delivery and placing Central New York on the global forefront."


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