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Researchers at the University of Dayton Research Institute are showing what can happen when a small drone strikes the wing of an aircraft. The team mimicked a collision between a 2.1-pound DJI Phantom 2 quadcopter and a Mooney M20 aircraft.
Video shows the drone ripping through the plane’s wing in conditions that simulate a crash taking place at 238 miles per hour.
“We wanted to help the aviation community and the drone industry understand the dangers that even recreational drones can pose to manned aircraft before a significant event occurs,” said Kevin Poormon, group leader for impact physics at UDRI in a blogpost. “But there is little to no data about the type of damage UAVs can do, and the information that is available has come only from modeling and simulations.”
The FAA says it receives more than 100 reports a month of unmanned aircraft sightings.