Drones and the Future of Aviation - Air Force Essay Sample

Published: 2022-02-23
Drones and the Future of Aviation - Air Force Essay Sample
Type of paper:  Essay
Categories:  Aviation Air Force
Pages: 4
Wordcount: 868 words
8 min read

During the 1990s, the US Air Force started using Remotely Piloted Vehicles (RPV) to serve as aerial targets in various circumstances. The military termed the aircraft as Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAV). The technology of RPVs and UAVs was considered extraordinary since it required nobody to be on board the aircraft (Bernauw, 2016). The RAVs and UAVs, now commonly referred to as drones, are used in situations where human-crewed flight is considered dangerous. Since the 1990s, drones were specifically used by the military and other government bodies like the US Federal Aviation Administration (FAA). However, in modern times, drones can be owned privately, either by an individual or private corporation. The future of drones in aviation is unpredictable. While the technology of uncrewed flight has been praised, it has also been criticized. Drones can be useful both for military and commercial purposes. However, the future of drones can bring about unprecedented challenges such as the invasion of privacy and trespassing. As such, the future of drones is both advantageous and disadvantageous.

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The existing aviation regime in the US encourages the commercial use of drones. During the Obama administration in 2016, the use of drones doubled. The regime allowed the use of drones commercially, on a research basis, and for education. The drones were meant for research purposes that are useful for the economy such as agriculture and science. Additionally, they were meant to be used in schools and colleges for academic research. Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) estimated that the growth would triple from 2016 to 2021. Moreover, the aviation safety agency estimated that commercial drones would increase in use by 1.6 million by 2021 (Schlag, 2012). The increase in commercial drones will boost the American economy by a huge margin. The commercial use of drones is meant to assist people in researching education and other meaningful activities. However, the commercial use of drones can pose a challenge on the possible invasion of privacy and trespassing. Although the FAA has put in place rules and regulations on the use of commercial drones, there are some loopholes. As such, many Americans feel that flying these objects in the sky can be a threat to their discretion (Bernauw, 2016). Consequently, organizations that own drones can also trespass on their competitors' area to gain an advantage. Hence, without clear guideline on the use of drones owned by people or organizations, privacy issues will arise. The future of using commercial drones will increase economic gains but create privacy and trespassing legal battles.

Drones used by the US military have an array of purposes in different sizes. During the 1990s and early 2000, the government used bigger UAVs such as the RQ-4 Global Hawks and MQ Predators. However, as time goes by, the drones keep getting smaller and unnoticeable. For instance, drones such as the Ryan QAM-34G can autonomously be programmed for flight. The US government has purchased more military drones equipped with laser-guided missiles and used by the military (Brunstetter, & Braun 2011). As a result, other countries have joined in the chase to own more drones. For instance, Britain, Russia, and South Korea have drones, but for surveillance purposes only. It is only the US, Israel, and Britain that have armed drones used by the military. The drones are meant to keep the country safe, protects its allies, and citizens in other countries. However, the increased use of drones poses a challenge to the safety and potential invasion. Although, the US denies the use of drones, in 2011, 40 people were killed in Pakistan's tribal areas in what was believed to be a drone strike (Brunstetter, & Braun 2011). The apparent use of drones does not come to a surprise since it all started in the era of George W. Bush. However, during the past, the use of drones for military purposes was kept low key unlike in present times where the use has doubled. It has caused political tension with other world countries such as Pakistan, Iraq, and Afghanistan.

In conclusion, a drone can be used in the sky to send back real-time footage of the activities on the ground. Drones are used for military and commercial purposes. Private drones are mostly fixed with a memory card that allows the user to record collected footage and upload it to a computer. On the other hand, military drones are meant to keep the country safe, protect its allies, and citizens in other countries. However, the safety of civilians in other countries has been compromised by the continued use of US military drones in countries such as Pakistan and Yemen. Thus, the international community is bound to make new regulations on the use of drones for combat in the future. The continued use of commercial drones will also cause privacy and trespassing issues. The more drone technology being used, the more political tensions and privacy battles will be faced by the US and other countries.


Bernauw, K. (2016). Drones: the emerging era of unmanned civil aviation. Zbornik PFZ, 66, 223.

Brunstetter, D., & Braun, M. (2011). The implications of drones on the just war tradition. Ethics & International Affairs, 25(3), 337-358.

Schlag, C. (2012). The new privacy battle: How the expanding use of drones continues to erode our concept of privacy and privacy rights. Pitt. J. Tech. L. & Pol'y, 13, 1-22.

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