Intel obtained two of the 76 waivers the FAA declared during a news conference in Washington, D.C. The chip maker received waivers for nighttime flights and to monitor a fleet of drones with a single pilot, says Anil Nanduri, general manager of unmanned aircraft systems (UAS) for Intel’s Perceptual Computing Group.
Intel bags two exemptions
Intel won an interesting exemption from the FAA’s Small UAS Rule or Part 107. The waiver allows the chip maker to fly at night and put one pilot in charge of several drones, according to a company spokesperson.
“This was granted because Intel has taken steps to reduce risk associated with its drone flights and proven itself through prior flight testing, technology, operational history and flight experience,” the chip maker said.
Intel claims the waiver that lets a single operator monitor a big fleet of drones is so far the only of its kind to be issued; however, more exemptions are in the works. The chip maker also said that it has proven itself through technology, operational history, prior flight testing and flight experience.
Nanduri added that their vision is to take the tech forward with not only hundreds of drones but maybe even thousands.
“We’re extremely pleased with the response from the FAA in processing our requests,” said Nanduri.
Earlier this year in a test in Palm Springs, California, the chip maker showcased its fleets of drones performing in the sky. Though Nanduri shared no details on when a Drone 100 light show would be held in the U.S. under Intel’s new waivers, he did state that the chip maker is working on it.
Others that got exemptions
Earlier this week, regulations governing the commercial use of small drones in the U.S. went into effect, and immediately companies started to obtain exemptions from the U.S. Federal Aviation Administration.
Apart from Intel, CNN also obtained a permit to fly a tethered drone over people for news collecting purposes. In addition, according to a press statement by Michael Huerta of the FAA, BNSF Railroad obtained a permit to fly its drones over people and “beyond the line of sight” to control its operations on the ground, and PrecisionHawk got an exemption to fly its agricultural drones “beyond the line of sight” where operators cannot see them with the naked eye, reports MarketWatch.
On Thursday, Intel shares closed up 0.36% at $36.02. Year to date, the stock is up almost 3%, while in the last year, it is up almost 27%. The stock has a 52-week high of $36.04 and a 52-week low of $27.68.