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AR. Drone is NOT grounded

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The latest Civil Aviation Authorities announcement banning unmanned aircrafts has no effect on on the Parrot AR. Drone quadricopter as it does not meet any of the SACAA’S guidelines.

A lot of noise is currently being made about the SACAA’s immediate banning of the illegal flying, in civil airspace of Unmanned Aircraft Systems (UAS) or Unmanned Aircraft Vehicles (UAV). UAS or UAV’s are aircraft that can fly without a pilot on board. These aircraft come in all sorts of shapes and sizes and can be controlled remotely by an individual on the ground, in another aircraft or through an on board computer system.

The latest announcement from SACAA is that no ruling has been made to date. They aim to have an interim guidance document formulated to address restricted use of UAS’ until regulations are in place. It is envisaged that the interim document will be completed before 31 March 2015.

The great news for current and prospective Parrot AR. Drone owners is that these rulings in no way affect the “playground” of the AR. Drone fanatic and it seems they never will. If approved, the policy will require adopting the below guidelines, which are similar to those used in Europe and Australia:

– Flying only under 120m

– No flying within 4.2 nautical miles of an airport

– Flying only in line of sight of the operator (500m)

– No auto pilot flying or night flying

– No flying over public property and roads without permission.

Currently the Parrot AR. Drones have flying height restrictions of 100m which means that pilots of the AR. Drone would not be entering civil airspace and would therefore not be required to get authority to take their favourite toy out for a spin. The Parrot AR.Drone is not capable of autonomous flight, although stabilisation is automatic, and the AR. Drone is not capable of night-flying, due to the use of a camera for stabilisation.

So there you have it, continue to enjoy this quadricopter which is controlled intuitively using a Smartphone or a tablet. The ultimate flying experience! View the earth from above, in high definition, and share your experience on the Internet with people all around the world – restriction free.

The AR. Drone 2.0 records an HD video during each flight which is sent directly to your device. Download your video to YouTube with just one click from a user-friendly interface, or share your pictures on Picasa. Everything is simple and quick with the wireless control application.

To get in on the fun in a legal fashion, visit www.smac.co.za to view the full range of Parrot AR. Drones available in South Africa.

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