The Center of Excellence is designed to lead the expansion of the autonomous systems industry in Virginia. “The autonomous systems industry is one of the cornerstones of the new Virginia economy,” said Governor McAuliffe. Virginia is home to a vast array of autonomy related assets located across the Commonwealth, as well as an FAA test site (Mid-Atlantic Aviation Partnership). Virginia has garnered a reputation as a leader in autonomous systems with industry estimates consistently placing the Commonwealth among the top 10 states positioned to reap the largest economic benefit from the industry’s $82 billion forecasted economic impact through 2025. The newly established Center will serve as the ombudsman and advocate for this industry in the Commonwealth and will as act as a champion for the development and deployment of all aspects of the autonomous systems industry.
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Virginia’s position as a leading state for the unmanned industry was further highlighted and promoted this week at the Association for Unmanned Vehicle System International “Xponential” event in Dallas. Governor Terry McAuliffe and members from his administration, along with the Unmanned Systems Association of Virginia (USAV), touted the Commonwealth’s vast array of autonomy-related assets and business-friendly regulatory environment.