Emerging Tech

NASA wants predictive analytics for drone-crash casualties

pedestrians (oneinchpunch/Shutterstock.com)

In a new request for quotations, NASA is asking for risk management and decision-making tools that can help it accurately estimate the casualties and fatalities caused by a drone that crashing into a populated area.

Currently, NASA said it is using county-level 2010 census data to calculate the number of people it projects would be affected by a crash along a drone's flightpath.  But because drone operators change flight plans, people on the ground move from place to place throughout the day and data from location-based services varies, NASA wants technology to help it "estimate updated dynamic population data throughout the flight at more refined area of interest." 

The request comes as agencies, industry and researchers are working to integrate drones in the national airspace.  A wide range of technologies and polices are needed to advance beyond visible line of sight flying, protect against mid-air collisions and keep people on the ground safe when unmanned systems are flying overhead.

Although drone operators currently need a special waiver from the Federal Aviation Administration to fly over populated areas, several of the 10 projects recently selected for the Unmanned Aircraft Systems Integration Pilot Program will help advance the technologies and regulations to make drone flights over people safe.

Read the full RFQ here.

This article first appeared in GCN, an FCW sister publication. 

About the Author

Susan Miller is executive editor at GCN.

Over a career spent in tech media, Miller has worked in editorial, print production and online, starting on the copy desk at IDG’s ComputerWorld, moving to print production for Federal Computer Week and later helping launch websites and email newsletter delivery for FCW. After a turn at Virginia’s Center for Innovative Technology, where she worked to promote technology-based economic development, she rejoined what was to become 1105 Media in 2004, eventually managing content and production for all the company's government-focused websites. Miller shifted back to editorial in 2012, when she began working with GCN.

Miller has a BA from West Chester University and an MA in English from the University of Delaware.

Connect with Susan at smiller@gcn.com or @sjaymiller.

Featured

  • Contracting
    8 prototypes of the border walls as tweeted by CBP San Diego

    DHS contractors face protests – on the streets

    Tech companies are facing protests internally from workers and externally from activists about doing for government amid controversial policies like "zero tolerance" for illegal immigration.

  • Workforce
    By Mark Van Scyoc Royalty-free stock photo ID: 285175268

    At OPM, Weichert pushes direct hire, pay agent changes

    Margaret Weichert, now acting director of the Office of Personnel Management, is clearing agencies to make direct hires in IT, cyber and other tech fields and is changing pay for specialized occupations.

  • Cloud
    Shutterstock ID ID: 222190471 By wk1003mike

    IBM protests JEDI cloud deal

    As the deadline to submit bids on the Pentagon's $10 billion, 10-year warfighter cloud deal draws near, IBM announced a legal protest.

Stay Connected

FCW Update

Sign up for our newsletter.

I agree to this site's Privacy Policy.