Flight test pilot Alex Gustafson dismantles an Insitu ScanEagle unmanned aircraft after a flight in Arlington, Ore. It's a good bet that in the not-so-distant future aerial drones will be part of Americansí everyday lives, performing countless useful functions. A far cry from the killing machines whose missiles incinerate terrorists, these generally small unmanned aircraft will help farmers more precisely apply water and pesticides to crops, saving money and reducing environmental impacts. They'll help police departments find missing people, reconstruct traffic accidents and act as lookouts for SWAT teams. They'll alert authorities to people stranded on rooftops by hurricanes, and monitor evacuation flows.
Photo by Associated Press /Chattanooga Times Free Press .
published Friday, March 29th, 2013
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WASHINGTON — The dawn of the age of aerial civilian drones is rich with possibilities for people far from the war zones where they made their devastating mark as a weapon of choice against terrorists.