LOS ANGELES—It's the land where Chuck Yeager broke the sound barrier, where the space shuttle fleet rolled off the assembly line and where the first private manned rocketship climbed to space.
Capitalizing on Southern California's aerospace fortunes, two rival groups want to add another laurel: drone test range.
They face crowded competition. In search of an economic boost, more than half the country is looking toward the sky expected to be buzzing in the near future with pilotless aircraft.
Before that can become reality, the Federal Aviation Administration last month put out a call to test fly drones at half a dozen to-be-determined sites before they can share the same space as commercial jetliners, small aircraft and helicopters.