Verizon Robotics to Test Drones at Oregon’s Pendleton Range

The facility provides more than 14,000 square miles of FAA-approved airspace for drone operations and testing

John Yellig

April 28, 2022

2 Min Read
Verizon Robotics, drones

Verizon Robotics has chosen the Pendleton Unmanned Aerial Systems Range in Oregon as the new proving ground for its drone development.

The telecom giant’s robotics unit is expanding its operations and will base its advanced air R&D, drone partner and long-range robotics at the Pendleton Range, which offers more than 14,000 square miles of FAA-approved airspace for drone operations and testing. 

Verizon Robotics will train Pendleton staff to operate a rapid-response command mobile-unit vehicle that can deploy mission-critical communications, applications and advanced computing solutions that can address air and ground robotics use cases. 

“The operations we are deploying at Pendleton Range will help advance R&D initiatives for customers,” Verizon Robotics President Mariah Scott said. “The range’s location helps create a local innovation testbed that can emulate real-life conditions, helping to bring products and services to market faster.”

The northeastern Oregon facility’s mission is to facilitate the integration of UAVs into the national airspace system. It hosts between 400 to 1,000 test-and-learn operations per month and handles both drones and ground robotics.

“The Pendleton Range is excited to be working with Verizon Robotics to provide state-of-the-art situational-awareness technology to one of the busiest UAV test ranges in the U.S.,” Pendleton manager Darryl Abling said. “This investment will help to develop technologies and processes that will help accelerate overall aviation innovation as robotics become more integrated into the National Airspace System.”

This week, Verizon Robotics is participating in the AUVSI XPONENTIAL autonomous technology convention in Orlando, Fla., where it will conduct live demonstrations of its tech and provide speakers to two events.

“We’re seeing demand for robotics jump as more organizations are moving into robotics to address labor shortages, maximize resources and differentiate themselves from the competition,” Scott said. “AUVSI serves as a meeting point for enterprises that are serious about having a competitive advantage through robotics in the marketplace.” 

About the Author(s)

John Yellig

John Yellig has been a journalist for more than 20 years, writing and editing for a range of publications both in print and online. His primary coverage areas over the years have included criminal justice, politics, government, finance, real estate and technology.

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