Oregon National Guard plans weekly drone flights

Oregon National Guard plans weekly drone flights
An Oregon Army National Guard RQ-7 Shadow lands at the Naval Weapons Systems Training Facility (NWSTF) in Boardman, Ore., following a demonstration flight on June 19, 2012. The Oregon Army National Guard's Bravo Co., 41 Brigade Special Troops Battalion, operates the Unmanned Aerial System (UAS), which is the first of its kind for a National Guard unit in the United States. (Photo by Sgt. Jason Van Mourik, Oregon Military Department Public Affairs)

PENDLETON, Ore. (AP) — The Oregon National Guard

plans to fly drones over the Eastern Oregon Airport in Pendleton

and nearby wheat fields once a week to train for aerial surveillance in combat.

The guard demonstrated one of its four drones Tuesday and said it was the first flight of an unmanned military aircraft through civilian airspace.

The Oregonian reports

the Guard is moving drone training to the airport to avoid conflicts with jets from the Whidbey Island Naval Air Station at the

bombing range near Boardman


The Guard flies the RQ7B Shadow. It's 11 feet long with a wingspan of 14 feet and is equipped with infrared and video cameras.


Information from: The Oregonian,


Copyright 2013 The Associated Press