As we come to the end of 2022, UAS technology is advancing at a rapid rate to meet military, commercial and social needs. These needs are also driving economic benefits of the UAS industry.
To give you a few examples of the technology needs and growth, we are seeing advancements in helping the U.S. courier industry’s approximately $100 billion in annual revenue market, deliver goods to customers, both within the U.S. and around the globe. These advancements are one of the key factors in helping the U.S. and world unravel what has now become a complicated and bound up web of supply-chain channels, plagued with a massive number of bottlenecks.
Currently, there are about 7.7 billion people on Earth, and by 2050, that number is expected to be 10 billion, and they need to eat. Once again, autonomous systems are going to be critical in becoming one of the solutions in helping farmers feed a growing population. We are even seeing groups exploring advanced agriculture technologies to elevate the future of the AgTech industry in space. Space agriculture and autonomous technology may one day be the catalyst for high-yield crop production, at the same time requiring less land and energy, ultimately helping farmers create more with less.
Moving even faster are the developments within the military sector. The U.S. is focused on making major military advancements within the autonomous and hypersonic space. Recently, Senator John Hoeven (R-ND), a ranking member of the U.S. Appropriations Committee, along with U.S. Senator Kevin Cramer (R-ND) and member of the Senate Armed Services Committee, and Test Resource Management Center (TRMC) Director, George Rumford celebrated the DoD’s SkyRange initiative program launched at the Test Resource Management Center at GrandSky in Grand Forks, ND. The TRMC will be covering Global Hawk aircraft to aid in hypersonic missile testing. SkyRange is a Department of Defense (DoD) initiative to retrofit long-endurance unmanned aerial systems with advanced instrumentation to support high-priority DoD flight tests. The goal is to strengthen our nation’s defense and security, while bringing additional economic opportunities and jobs to the sector.
This year’s UAS Magazine and directory are designed to support the 16th annual UAS Summit & Expo. The event will showcase some of the most captivating entities within the UAS industry that are carting a path to assured autonomy by fostering collaboration and a testing environment that is uncovering new possibilities. The increased number of exhibitors is a prime example of how this ecosystem of learning and testing is growing. The exhibitors are excited to demonstrate how real-world challenges are being overcome through innovative technologies. The UAS Summit takes great pride in cultivating networking opportunities that help attendees share ideas, better understand challenges, and create stronger relationships and new partnerships.
Through the stories and contributions within this issue of UAS Magazine, the new UAS Industry Directory, and the UAS Summit & Expo, I believe the ecosystem of support and technological advancements are on full display. With existing and new markets expanding to meet advancement in technology, the information being provided within the magazine and at the UAS Summit & Expo is very timely.
I look forward to seeing what 2023 has in store and what technical advancements the UAS community will achieve.
Author: John Nelson
VP of Operations
UAS Magazine and BBI International