uAvionics is offering its pingRX Automatic Dependent Surveillance – Broadcast (ADS-B) receivers free to first responders and UAS service organizations participating in rescue and recovery efforts associated with Hurricane Dorian. uAvionics is providing one pingRX to each organisation. PingRX is a dual-frequency ADS-B receiver weighing only five grams intended for use onboard a UAS. It retails for USD249 and can provide the operator with a digital view of ADS-B equipped aircraft in the airspace up to hundreds of miles away. When integrated with a compatible autopilot, local ADS-B traffic can also be displayed on a ground control station.
In 2017, in response to Hurricane Harvey’s landfall in Houston TX, UAS were used extensively for the first time in recovery and rescue efforts. The use of UAS has continued to grow in response to hurricane efforts ever since. Hurricane Dorian is expected to travel along the Eastern coast of the U.S. northward at a slow pace, creating extensive damage from winds and flooding. The FAA has published guidance for UAS operators, urging strict adherence to Notices to Airmen (NOTAMS) and Temporary Flight Restrictions (TFR). The airspace in these areas can be crowded and unpredictable.
The FAA’s mandate for ADS-B OUT equipage on manned aircraft has a deadline of January 1, 2020 – so equipage levels are currently high. Users are cautioned however that equipage is not at 100%, so reliance on ADS-B as a sole means of Detect and Avoid (DAA) is not advised.
First responders and UAS service organizations are encouraged to contact uAvionix at firstname.lastname@example.org for details on the offer.
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