A little background is necessary for this one: Gordon Cooper, the last Mercury astronaut had a complete electrical failure - everything but his radio dead, no instruments, no control system - while in orbit. The capsule wasn't designed for pilot control so he had to manually operate the boosters with a watch and the fuel valves. After nearly dieing in space:
"... that's really what we'd been wanting to do all along. So, it just gave me the opportunity to do what we'd been wanting to do."
Drones are, in essence, flying autonomous vehicles. Pros and cons surrounding drones today might well foreshadow the debate over the development of self-driving cars. In the context of a strongly regulated aviation industry, "self-flying" drones pose a fresh challenge. How safe is it to fly drones in different environments? Should drones be required for visual line of sight Ė as are piloted airplanes? Join EE Times' Junko Yoshida as she moderates a panel of drone experts.