2,500 applicants sign up for drone experiments

Aerix drone
The FAA wants to give commercial drones freer rein. (Aerix Photo)

The city of Seattle, King County, Boeing, KING 5 and Tukwila’s police department are among more than 2,500 organizations and individuals who have registered their interest in experiments that could lead to routine drone deliveries, aerial night patrols and other advanced operations involving unmanned aerial systems.

One big name is missing from the Federal Aviation Administration’s list, which was published this week. It’s Amazon, the Seattle-based online retailer that’s been working on its own drone delivery system for years.

The fact that Amazon isn’t mentioned as an “interested party” doesn’t mean Amazon is uninterested: Registering isn’t a requirement for participating in the UAS Integration Pilot Program, which  the FAA set up to push the envelope for drone operations.

Being on the list of interested parties merely serves as a signal that the registrant wants to join a team that’ll be put together by governmental entities on a different list. That list of “lead applicants” has not been published.

Get the full story on GeekWire.

By Alan Boyle

Mastermind of Cosmic Log, contributing editor at GeekWire, author of "The Case for Pluto: How a Little Planet Made a Big Difference," president of the Council for the Advancement of Science Writing. Check out "About Alan Boyle" for more fun facts.

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