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US unveils new drone policy for civilian uses

The new rules provides the first national, uniform guidelines for non-recreational operation of unmanned aircraft systems under 55 pounds, the White House said.

Under the new rule, drone flight will be permitted for commercial, scientific, public, and educational purposes, pursuant to a set of operational and safety requirements, the White House said.

“We are in the early days of an aviation revolution that will transform how we gather information about our world, enable more accurate science, move products around the country, and protect public health and the environment,” it said. Noting that aviation technologies in recent years have emerged that are powering a revolution in unmanned flight, the White House said the development of these technologies has made drones commercially available at scale for the first time.

 Commercial operators are using unmanned aircraft for a wide variety of applications, and consumers can choose from scores of vehicles of different sizes and capacities, many of which can be taken out of a box, launched directly into flight, and operated from a smart phone or a tablet, it said. 
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