IP RATING STANDARDS
RotorDrone|December/ January 2021
WHAT THEY MEAN FOR COMMERCIAL DRONES
Simon Vogt

The drone market has experienced strong growth in recent years. As both hobbyist and professional users alike take great interest in exploring the capabilities these devices have to offer, this growth is set to continue over the long-term, with a huge 76,000 drones projected to be flying the UK skies by 2030, according to Skies without Limits, a 2018 report from PricewaterhouseCoopers.

As drones continue to evolve and reach new heights that humans cannot, we are seeing a rapidly growing range of new use cases and application types. Drone-based delivery services are coming to the fore as highlighted by UPS’s Flight Forward project launch. Drones are also being put to work in the construction industry to track site progress and collect data for 3D model planning. This was most recently seen from the drone footage captured during the construction of Wuhan’s new hospital. We are also seeing a wide range of other drone markets opening up for drones from agriculture, to medicines delivery, and to mapping and surveying.

Standards development and operating constraints

Currently, reliability remains the biggest obstacle to the widespread deployment of drones in many commercial settings. A lack of reliability may lead to the loss of the drone, reduced customer satisfaction, significant damage to brand reputation, or a combination of all three.

For governments and administrative authorities, a lack of reliability also represents a danger to the general public from drones crashing out of the sky. The approach taken therefore is typically prudent and cautious.

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