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FAA Approves 1st Commercial Drones As Funding Cuts Loom

Law360, New York (July 29, 2013, 7:18 PM EDT) -- The Federal Aviation Administration approved the first two drones for commercial use Friday, taking a major step toward an integration effort that may be stalled by a measure being considered by the U.S. Senate that would cut off funding until the agency assesses the technology's privacy risks.

Facing a mandate to integrate commercial and recreational unmanned drones into U.S. airspace by October 2015, the FAA took what it described as “one giant leap for unmanned-kind” by issuing restricted category type certificates to Insitu’s Scan Eagle X200 and AeroVironment’s PUMA, which both weigh less than 55 pounds and are about 4 1/2...

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