Drone test flights starting in Texas -FAA

Reuters News
Posted: Jun 20, 2014 1:40 PM

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - The fourth of six U.S. test sites chosen to perform research on unmanned aircraft systems (UAS), or drones, has started operations in Texas to study weather patterns, among other things, the U.S. Federal Aviation Administration said on Friday.

The main focus of the Texas site will be on safety of operations and data gathering in authorized airspace and airworthiness standards, using an AAAI RS-16 drone weighing about 85 pounds (39 kg).

Specific projects under the wing of a team at Texas A&M University-Corpus Christi include the preservation and restoration of the ocean and ocean wetlands along the Padre Island National Seashore; and research in advance of approaching tropical storms.

(Reporting by Ros Krasny; Editing by Eric Beech)