NIAS launches Nevada Drone Center of Excellence for Public Safety

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The Nevada Institute for Autonomous Systems (NIAS) has launched the Nevada Drone Center of Excellence for Public Safety (NDCOE) to help save lives and reduce air hazards from UAS incursions.

Located in Las Vegas, Nevada, NDCOE will seek to do this by “empowering a shared safety vision with the FAA’s integration of drones into the commercial air traffic system.”

“We are taking an aggressive approach toward solving the complex UAS Industry challenge of mitigating drone incursions into the National Airspace System (NAS)—one of the toughest FAA challenges today,” explains Dr. Chris Walach, Senior Director, NIAS and the FAA-designated Nevada UAS Test Site.

“What we are doing in Nevada will be of immense value to the DOT, FAA, DHS, DOJ, commercial airlines, visitor venues, and the UAS Industry. This new center will help advance infrastructure protections, drone detection innovations, enhance air safety, and expand air commerce in Nevada.”

Among many things, NDCOE will provide safety incursion research data, UAS technology best practices, and educational material. The new center will also conduct public workshops that promote and protect the public’s safety and privacy in an “open and ethical manner.”

In an effort to protect and educate residents and visitors when it comes to UAS operations, the center will look to offer protection against UAS users that pose a public safety hazard due to inexperience and/or malicious UAS operations.

NDCOE adds that it will advance a variety of UAS operations, including but not limited to, wildland firefighting, gas-leak detection, and time-sensitive medical delivery technologies for life-saving medical equipment and organs.

“In addition to fostering major advances in UAS technology with testing partners like the FAA, NASA, and Switch, Nevada is also home to the most registered drone users in the nation in Las Vegas,” says Paul Anderson, Executive Director of the Nevada Governor’s Office of Economic Development.

“This dynamic makes such a program as the Nevada Drone Center of Excellence for Public Safety a natural step as drones increasingly become a bigger part of our daily lives.”

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