Unmanned Aerial Vehicle / Remotely Piloted Aircraft research facility proposed for Western Australia

Cyber Technology Cyber Eye 2v2 UAV at Langley Park on 7 November 2009. These are designed and built in Bibra Lake, in the southern suburbs of Perth, Western Australia. The CyberEye II is a Medium Altitude Long Endurance (MALE) Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (UAV). The advanced design of the CyberEye II allows it to carry up to a 20 kg payload for up to 10 hours of continuous mission time.  Photo © David Eyre
Cyber Technology Cyber Eye 2v2 UAV at Langley Park on 7 November 2009.
These are designed and built in Bibra Lake, in the southern suburbs of Perth, Western Australia. The CyberEye II is a Medium Altitude Long Endurance (MALE) Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (UAV). The advanced design of the CyberEye II allows it to carry up to a 20 kg payload for up to 10 hours of continuous mission time.
Photo © David Eyre
Aibotix X6 UAV being used to conduct a survey of Rio Tinto's Argyle Diamond Mine in September 2014. Since the open pit mine cannot be entered below a level of 50 meters, aerial surveying is the only possibility to detect subsidence or other potential dangers to the workers underground at an early stage. Photo © Aibotix
Aibotix X6 UAV being used to conduct a survey of Rio Tinto’s Argyle Diamond Mine in September 2014. Since the open pit mine cannot be entered below a level of 50 meters, aerial surveying is the only way to detect subsidence or other potential dangers to the workers underground at an early stage.
Photo © Aibotix

15 July 2016 © David Eyre

The West Australian has reported that the discussions are underway to develop a “drone airport and research facility” in Western Australia, as the State seeks to diversify from its current heavy economic reliance on the resources industry.

As AviationWA reported in September 2015, the use of UAVs/RPAs is seeing tremendous growth, and the proposed facility could see Western Australia take a leading role in this burgeoning technology, allowing testing of new drones in dedicated airspace.

Murray Field airport near Mandurah is mentioned as one potential site.

WA already has a local UAV manufacturer, CyberEye. CyberEye UAVs were proposed for use in beach patrols, as reported by AviationWA in 2012.

The current discussions are being held between Regional Development Australia, State Government departments, Peel Development Commission, industry and Local Government councils.

David Eyre

President, Aviation Association of WA Inc

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