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Shannon testing paves the way for drone deliveries

A WORLD leading operator of cargo drone deliveries hopes to begin operating commerical deliveries from Shannon in the near future. SkyPorts has been running test flights from Shannon for a number of weeks after receiving a Light UAS Operator Certificate from the Irish Aviation Authority, the first one issued in the EU. The drones have been flying across the Shannon estuary over and back to Foynes of late, after the company received the cert, allowing for Beyond Visual Line of Sight drone operations. Already the company uses drones to make commercial and medical deliveries in the UK and in Singapore, and it’s expected that the same thing will happen from Shannon quite soon. Duncan Walker, CEO of SkyPorts said that testing at Shannon has gone well. “We’ve been flying pretty much every day for the past couple of weeks,” he told The Champion. “It’s been great, we’ve had some robust conditions, and it’s been going very, very well. It’s a …

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Mountshannon eagles’ breeding failure

MOUNTSHANNON’s white-tailed sea eagles’ attempts at breeding this year have failed and while the cause cannot be determined, drones have been identified as a possible threat to the birds nesting. Dr Allan Mee of the Golden Eagle Trust, which oversees the re-introduction programme for the white-tailed sea eagle, explained that the failure of the Mountshannon pair’s eggs this year is “unexpected”. “They have been successful for the last three years, so we were surprised. We don’t know what happened for sure. There was anecdotal evidence of disturbance being a factor around the island or on the island,” he outlined. He said there were sightings of a drone in the vicinity but said he could not say conclusively the reason for the failure of the pair’s breeding this year and any number of natural factors could have been the cause. “All of that could be coincidental. If [drones] are in the area and then the birds fail, it is not necessarily …

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