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Nevada UAV test program suffers setback as Magpie goes down

December 19, 2014  By The Associated Press

Dec. 19, 2014, Boulder City, Nev. - A drone testing program in Nevada is off to a bumpy start after the first unmanned aircraft authorized to fly without Federal Aviation Administration supervision crashed during a ceremony in Boulder City.

Dignitaries, including Gov. Brian Sandoval, U.S. Sen. Dean Heller and
U.S. Rep. Joe Heck, were present Friday when the orange aircraft dubbed
Magpie was launched by hand, flew about 10 feet and then went down
nose-first into the desert floor.

Officials said the drone was not damaged, but they didn't try to fly it again during the ceremony.

The testing agency, Nevada
Institute for Autonomous Systems, is the first in the nation with FAA
approval to issue airworthiness certificates on its own.

Nevada is one of six states chosen as national test sites as the FAA develops drone regulations.



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