Last week, the White House announced it wants Congress to act on new laws that would permit increased monitoring and the remote destruction of “drone” aircraft.

One news article said that ordinary Ukrainian’s use of drones to surveil Russian troops was why they need to be more heavily regulated in the U.S.

A “drone” refers to unpiloted aircraft. They’re increasingly common among tech enthusiasts and hobbyists such as photographers and can be easily purchased.

Source: U.S. drone carrying guns intercepted after flying into southwestern Ontario | National Post

In Dec 2019, the FAA proposed a rulemaking that would have required all model aircraft over 8 ounces (in other words, toys) to report their location and their operator, in real time, once per second, into a national database. The final rule the FAA issued only calls for each aircraft to eventually have a “Remote ID” transmitted over wireless signals.

But Homeland Security is back with more ideas on regulating model aircraft.

My guess (from the previous FAA episode, and this is just speculation): eventually, to fly a model aircraft in the U.S, over 8 ounces (250 grams), the government will require you to have an FAA Remote Pilot’s license, have undergone a background criminal check (at your own expense), and undergo periodic refresher training. All craft will be required to have Remote ID.

All of this is sort of silly when you realize that hobbyists have been designing and building DIY radio-controlled model aircraft for over 90 years! Anyone intent on criminal behavior can readily build a model aircraft that evades the rules.

By EdwardM

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