The buzz over drones at AirVenture

Up to 100 synchronized lighted drones from Michigan-based Great Lakes Drone Company set to...
Up to 100 synchronized lighted drones from Michigan-based Great Lakes Drone Company set to perform a 10-minute show at EAA AirVenture Oshkosh 2018 (photo courtesy EAA)(WBAY)
Published: Jul. 26, 2018 at 6:25 PM CDT
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The popularity of drones is growing, making the unmanned aircraft a big attraction at AirVenture this year.

From displays and demonstrations to equipment and explanations, drones are getting a lot of attention here at the world's greatest airshow in Oshkosh.

"We will have about half a million people or more come to EAA, right? So, we'll have about a hundred thousand float through here. Every year it gets bigger and bigger. This year has been the best so far," drone pilot Chris Knight says.

Unlike most of the aircraft on display at AirVenture, the drone industry is easy for anyone to get into.

While the costs have come down, the technology is advancing.

And whether you're flying commercially or just for fun, drone usage is endless.

"They can collect all sorts of information very rapidly, and they're maneuverable as compared to a fixed wind aircraft. Drones can go places aircraft can't go," Andrew Baker, Aerial Robotics Guru, said.

And for the first time ever, with FAA approval, drones will be center stage in the evening airshow Thursday.

"This is the first time that drones are being utilized and approved as an acrobatic performance for an airshow and integrated into the airshow, so while our drones are up there's other aircraft that will be in the air as we blend all of our performances together," Matt Quinn with the Great Lakes Drone Company said.

Great Lakes Drone Company programmed more than 60 of its drones to perform.

"We're going to show the audience some love, and we're also going to end it off with a little patriotic twist," Quinn promised.

Something to help pique the interests of the future generation of pilots.

"Drones are literally now the gateway drug to aviation," said Quinn.

The evening airshow, delayed from Wednesday because of the weather, begins at 8 p.m.