Disney Plans To Add 50 Drones At A Time To Their Fireworks Shows
As you may know, we love drones here at Coaster Nation, especially since our sister site, FlyingVids.com is built off of this technology. New reports show that Disney may fly 50 drones at a time in its Disneyland fireworks shows! So the next time Cinderella looks out her castle window, it won’t be odd to see a drone flying by!
Based on a previous trademark filing, Disney was looking into the concept of flying drones in their night ending shows and parades, both as a way to create floating light displays and even as a possible way to pull around large puppet-like animated character displays. Currently, it is illegal to fly the drones without an exemption. Disney hopes to use up to 50 drones equipped with LED lights as part of the night time spectaculars at the Disneyland Resort and Walt Disney World.
The Walt Disney Co. DIS, +0.36% has officially taken the next step in integrating drones into its fireworks shows at Disneyland and Walt Disney World: it has applied to the Federal Aviation Administration for what’s called a Section 333 exemption, which allows a company to legally operate drones commercially. Currently, it is illegal to operate a drone for commercial purposes, though that’s expected to change in 2016.
If approved, the drones will fly a pre-programmed flight path and emit LED lights at various intervals, lighting up the sky. Up to 50 drones at one time could be used for nightly firework shows, according to details included in the Section 333 exemption request.
Fans were concerned that the drones could malfuntion and crash down at any given time, creating a dangerous atmosphere. The paperwork filed with the FAA states that these drones will only fly in the theme park’s “pyrotechnic clear zone,” meaning areas that are inaccessible to visitors. So, there’s no chance for harm, even is there is one that crashes down for any reason.
“It will be a safe and innovative addition to the Disney guest experience, one that Disney hopes will inspire the public’s imagination about what is next in aviation,” Disney said in the documents.
MarketWatch first broke news that Disney was considering using drones in its theme park entertainment back in August of 2014, after the company filed three patents for drone and UAV-related designs. Disney intends to call its drones “Flixels.”
Disney is using drones manufactured through 3D Robotics, a Berkeley, Calif.-based drone startup that has raised $99 million over four funding rounds from investors including Qualcomm Inc. QCOM, -0.10% and Richard Branson.
With drones becoming more and more popular, it was only a matter of time before parks like Disney took advantage of these powerful machines. This will could take their shows to that next level creating a ton of exciting possibilities. Once synced with technology such as their “Glow With the Show“, the sky is literally the limit!
Check back often and watch our socials. We will be sure to report again as more develops.
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