MSU drone center has new associate director

Jim Gaines
Staff Writer

Stephen “Lux” Luxion, a retired U.S. Air Force colonel, has been named associate director of the Alliance for System Safety of Unmanned Aerial Systems through Research Excellence center, according to a Mississippi State University news release.
The ASSURE center is based at MSU, but involves numerous universities, government agencies and private firms. Drone testing in Mississippi is conducted at MSU's Stennis Space Center on the Gulf Coast, over farms in the Delta, and at the Raspet Flight Research Lab in Starkville.
Luxion, a graduate of the USAF Academy, retired from the military in 2014, according to the news release.
He established the Air Force's first armed drone squadron after the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks; helped NATO establish its first “ aerospace center of excellence;” and as his final military assignment taught aerospace studies and tested drones at Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University, the news release said.
“We are very pleased to have someone with Lux’s knowledge and leadership ability join us,” ASSURE Director James Poss said in the news release. “He understands that ASSURE is uniquely positioned to take advanced research and turn it into FAA rules that work for the agency and industry.”
The drone market is predicted to create more than 100,000 jobs and $82 billion in economic impact in the decade after adoption of FAA rules on drone use. More than 1,200 of those jobs and $973 million in impact could be in Mississippi.