Future of Unmanned Aviation

  • Kimon P. Valavanis
  • George J. Vachtsevanos
Reference work entry


This chapter attempts to bring closure to the Handbook of UAVs. This, by itself, is an extremely challenging and difficult task; it should not be, but it is! After all, the reason is so simple that it was almost entirely ignored and overlooked during the course of preparing the handbook. Unmanned aviation has witnessed exponential growth, worldwide, amidst controversy and difficulties, with new potential applications regularly surfacing. And although several federal agencies and multiple governments, with perhaps competitive agendas, are involved in accomplishing the common goal of integration of unmanned aviation into civilian airspace, everything seems to move so fast, that when one considers that a specific subject is completed, new changes and modifications are in effect. However, it looks like that 2013 will be “the critical year” for a new jumpstart in unmanned aviation, with efforts converging and roadmaps being in place towards the ultimate goal of integration of unmanned aviation into civilian and commercial airspace. This goal remains intact and it has not changed over the years. Therefore, this chapter aims at, simply, summarizing the state of the art, the potential of unmanned aviation, referring to challenges that still need to be resolved and overcome, commenting on economic impact, and highlighting anticipated future developments. At the same time, this epilogue may also be viewed as justification for enhancing the handbook publishing a second edition.

Let's think the unthinkable, let's do the undoable, let's prepare to grapple with the ineffable itself, and see if we may not eff it after all.

Douglas Adams

(Dirk Gently's Holistic Detective Agency, 1987)


Homeland Security International Civil Aviation Organization Federal Aviation Administration Unmanned Aircraft Ground Control Station 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht 2015

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Electrical and Computer EngineeringDaniel Felix Ritchie School of Engineering and Computer Science, University of DenverDenverUSA
  2. 2.School of Electrical and Computer EngineeringThe Georgia Institute of TechnologyAtlantaUSA

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