UAS Inflection Point
The unmanned aerial vehicles (“UAV”) and systems (“UAS”) industry has reached an inflection point. Products and technologies are rapidly transitioning from government applications into a wider array of commercial uses, much of this investment on the financial backs of industry players and innovative entrepreneurs. The race is on to establish new applications and markets, all the while in the absence of a favorable regulatory environment and underscored by adverse economic conditions and limited budgets. America has much at stake in responding to the challenges facing commercialization.
The UAS America Fund
The UAS America Fund, LLC (“UAS Fund” or the “Fund”), incorporated in April, 2014, was established to provide over $2.2 billion in financing to benefit the emerging commercial UAS sector of the U.S. aerospace industry. The UAS Fund will draw 100% of its funding from private sector sources and expects the U.S. Congress to provide backstop treasury loan guarantees to assist with commercial debt programs. The UAS Fund will financially support projects related to developing required technologies, building supporting control and communications (C2) infrastructure, and equipping civil and commercial unmanned aircraft with communications, surveillance, navigation, and other avionics equipment. With the funding in this form of Public Private Partnership (PPP) model coming from non-government sources, the UAS Fund has financial backing from aerospace companies and investment groups that will bring both capital and experience to the project.
Additional details on the UAS America Fund can be found here.
By investing in UAS control and communications systems, as well as UAV development and integration efforts nationwide, UAS Fund plans to unlock the full benefits of UAS commercialization, economic development and job creation in the United States of America. UAS Fund will partner with aerospace companies, Congress, states and local governments to accelerate UAV deployment in America’s most promising regions and locales. With effective industrial partnerships and unmanned system user input, the private sector can alleviate the strain on public budgets while also delivering key infrastructure systems to those locales most ready to serve a new commercial industry bringing attractive jobs and economic activity.