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®


PATENT PENDING


includes a “blanket” certificate of authorization to fly that vehicle. Plan ahead, as 333s can take 120 days or more to approve. With a 333 and a COA, an FAA certified airman must operate a drone. Yes, you need to be a registered pilot to fly a drone commercially (or at least a balloon or glider pilot).


Similar to a hobbyist, commercial drone operations are allowed below 400 feet, but must be five miles or more from an airport. While these regulations seem excessive, it’s worth noting that there is no FAA police force running around the country prose- cuting drone pilots. That said, there is the potential for fines of $27,500 if you don’t register a hobby drone. One commercial company has been fined $1.9M for not obtaining the required FAA approvals. It is anticipated that new, looser regulations will be put in place later this year for drones under four pounds.


As a rule, drones should always be operated within line of sight, away from crowds and over private property with permission. As for privacy, generally if something you’re doing is illegal to do on a ladder with a camera (i.e., peering over a neighbor’s fence) it is illegal to do with a drone and a camera.


As the regulatory framework catches up with this new technology and the cost of specialized drone systems providing industry spe- cific solutions comes down, we’ll no doubt see greater adoption of drones. In the mean time, it is on us in the industry to prove they can be operated safely and responsibly while providing a positive return on investment for our customers. With that, there will be nothing to stop the drone revolution.


Aqua-Tech is a delivery technology designed for innovative producers seeking greater plant productivity and ease of use for nutrients applied through fertigation systems. Aqua-Tech is unsurpassed in preventing hard water tie-up which leads to scale formation and nutrient unavailability. Aqua-Tech delivers highly available low-salt nutrients safely and precisely in conjunction with a unique polyamine technology that works to eliminate phosphorus tie-up in most cases.


Ask us today about our NEW Aqua-Tech® Product Line


visit us online: www.nachurs.com or call: 800.622.4877 ext. 255


Justin McClellan is chief marketing officer at GreenSight Agronomics, an agricultural


drone company. He has 12 years of experi- ence designing satellite and drone recon- naissance systems for the military before earning his MBA and forming GreenSight.


FERTIGATE WITH CONFIDENCE® © 2016. NACHURS ALPINE SOLUTIONS. All rights reserved. irrigationtoday.org 31


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