Rise of the drones
A wayward pizza delivery may not be an obvious cause of airport delays. Nor is a nosey photographer or lost box set of Game of Thrones. They do all have one thing in common, however. They can (and are) being served by drones; drones which are increasingly creating hassle for air traffic authorities.
What was once perceived as a novelty is now fast becoming a serious consideration for many senior supply chain and technology personnel, with the likes of Amazon leading the way. Hobbyists are also taking to drones in their droves.
According to The Consumer Technology Association, 700,000 drones were shipped in 2015, an increase of 63 percent on 2014. In the space of 10 years from 2015 to 2025 the industry is expected to grow from a value of $3.3 billion to $90 billion.
The advantages are obvious: super-fast deliveries, convenience, fuel efficiency and cost among those which will be felt by businesses and their consumers. But, much like their driverless counterparts and human-operated vehicles on the roads, integration with air traffic is cause for a few headaches. Dealing with turbulence and changing airflows in urban spaces is another head scratcher.