TSA Says the Number of Agents Skipping Work Has Spiked Due to the Shutdown

Mother Jones

Transportation Security Administration agents help passengers through a security checkpoint at Newark Liberty International Airport in Newark. New figures released Sunday reveal a record number of agents are not showing up to work. The Transportation Security Administration has reported that the number of airport security agents not showing up to work reached an all-time high over the holiday weekend, according to the Washington Post, a side-effect of the government shutdown that the Department of Homeland Security previously stated was non a concern. TSA agents are among the estimated 800,000 federal workers who are furloughed or working without pay during a government shutdown that is reaching its 30th day. The Washington Post reported that the number of unscheduled absences hit 8 percent nationally this weekend, up from a 3 percent a year ago.

Biomimicry Gives a Lift to AI in Aviation – Northrop Grumman


Who among us hasn't stared up at a hawk or a vulture circling lazily in the sky and wondered how they stay aloft so long? Or wondered how sky-darkening flocks of migrating birds can travel thousands of miles so quickly and so effortlessly? Researchers are now able to tackle these questions more systematically using biomimicry, the process of imitating nature's systems to solve complex human problems. Their goal is to develop an artificial intelligence algorithm that will allow gliders -- either piloted or autonomous sailplanes -- to mimic the flight behavior and endurance of birds. Soon, AI in aviation will transform the types of missions that gliders perform.

Alphabet Unit Tests New System to Identify Airborne Drones


Under the concept, operators, government agencies and individual citizens would have access to the data. The recent test results are expected to provide momentum for proposed package delivery to consumers and many other drone uses currently stalled by regulatory hurdles. U.S. air-safety and law-enforcement officials have balked at approving extensive commercial drone operations without reliable identification techniques. In addition to Wing, which is slated to demonstrate fledgling-package delivery procedures in Virginia this year, the flights included drone-service companies AirMap Inc. and Kittyhawk. With three of the burgeoning industry's leading companies backing the approach and promising to step up testing, proponents hope to persuade the Federal Aviation Administration to loosen flight restrictions before completion of full-fledged rule making expected to take years.

Heathrow: Man charged with flying drone near airport

BBC News

A man has been charged with flying a drone near Heathrow Airport on 24 December. George Rusu is accused of using a drone on a field near the runway just days after a scare at Gatwick grounded more than 1,000 flights. He has been charged with flying a "small unmanned aircraft without permission of air traffic control". Mr Rusu, 38, from Hillingdon, will appear at Uxbridge Magistrates' Court on Tuesday. The alleged incident happened just three days after Gatwick Airport fully reopened on December 21, following three days of chaos affecting about 140,000 passengers.

9 of the best drones according to Amazon reviews


Over the past few years, drones and quadcopters have become more accessible. The cost of designing and manufacturing a good quality drone has gone down, so now more and more people can take up the hobby or up their photography game with impressive and daring photos and videos. But some drones are definitely better than others, so we rounded up the best drones for just about any person and situation. But before you start flying, it's important to register your new drone with the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) first, so you won't get in trouble with the authorities. After all, piloting an unregistered drone is against the law.

Now Artificial Intelligence can determine which Stories from Airlines will go Viral MarkTechPost


Can you imagine a world where artificial intelligence begins to determine the top stories? Currently, we are living in a world where AI is working to determine trends with search engines, with news and more. One specific area where AI can often dictate and determine which stories will go viral is on social media. A great example of artificial intelligence is instantly bouncing a story to top news happen in 2016. An American Airlines aircraft at Chicago O'Hare caught fire, and all of the passengers and crew members were evacuated on the landing strip.

Delivery Drones Use Bird-Inspired Legs to Jump Into the Air

IEEE Spectrum Robotics Channel

Drones have a fundamental design problem. The kind of drone that can carry large payloads at high speeds over long distances is fundamentally different from the kind of drone that can take off and land from a small area. In very simple terms, for the former, you want fixed wings, and for the latter, you want rotors. This problem has resulted in a bunch of weird drones that try to do both of these things at once, usually by combining desired features from fixed-wing drones and rotorcraft. We've seen tail-sitter drones that can transition from vertical take off to horizontal flight; we've seen drones with propeller systems that swivel; and we've seen a variety of airframes that are essentially quadrotors stapled to fixed-wing aircraft to give them vertical take-off and landing capability.

AI Transforms A Drone To A Multi-Mission Platform


Flying drones are mostly known as an amateur or professional devices for gaming, videography, racing and military missions count some of their applications. But what if one drone could do all the above? This drone as a platform idea was the starting point for the foundation team of AiRFLOW. The drone they designed is a common base for commercial, military and tailor-made solutions. This comes from a combination of software implies artificial intelligence technologies and a state of the art hardware that provides the necessary power for fail-safe operation and all the sensors required to complete its mission.

Regulators To Ease Restrictions On Drones, Clearing The Way For More Commercial Uses


Federal regulators have announced plans to allow drone operators to fly their unmanned aerial vehicles over populated areas and at night. A Wing Hummingbird drone from Project Wing arrives and sets down its package at a delivery location in Blacksburg, Va., last year. Federal regulators have announced plans to allow drone operators to fly their unmanned aerial vehicles over populated areas and at night. A Wing Hummingbird drone from Project Wing arrives and sets down its package at a delivery location in Blacksburg, Va., last year. Package delivery by drone is one small step closer to reality today.

$7.5 million to push last-mile drone delivery closer to reality


Drone logistics firm Flytrex has secured $7.5 million in Series B funding, adding to a $3 million Series A in early 2017. The Israeli firm has been aggressive pursuing real world testbeds and pilot programs to demonstrate the economic efficacy of urban drone delivery. Last year, Flytrex expanded delivery routes for Icelandic ecommerce company and is currently serving about half of Reykjavik with last mile drone delivery. In the U.S., which has notoriously stringent (some in the industry would say outdated) commercial drone rules, Flytrex has teamed up with private industry to tiptoe around regulation. Last year, the firm partnered with drone company EASE Drones and a private golf course in North Dakota to launch an on-course beverage delivery service.