How to Pass the Part 107 Test, Part 1: Interview With a Success Story


Part 107 Test

Kim Wheeler of 2Drone_Gals

This is Part 1 of “How to Pass the Part 107 Test.”  Look for DRONELIFE’s extensive reference list of free study guides, groups, and resources later this week.

In yesterday’s press conference, FAA Administrator Michael Huerta said that over 3,000 people had registered to take the Part 107 test – the Aeronautical Knowledge Test – on the first day that the new rule was effective.  Kim Wheeler of 2Drone_Gals, a photography and videography team based in Florida, was the first person to take the exam – and pass it! – at her local testing center. DRONELIFE caught up with Kim yesterday about her experience in taking the Part 107 test, and what she’d recommend to other drone operators.

DL:  Given that you are already an experienced drone operator, was the test harder or easier than you expected?
KW: The test was harder than I expected. I had heard that the FAA exams pull from the sample questions published but I did not find that to be the case.

DL: How did you prepare for the test?
KW: I studied part-time (a few hours a day, several days a week) over the past month as I am not one to cram. I began reading the FAA Advisory Circular, AC 107-2, then pertinent sections of the Pilot’s Handbook of Aeronautical Knowledge. After that I went through Sarah Nilsson’s UAG Test Prep, which is free on-line; I first learned of this through the “Amelia Droneharts” Facebook group.  [A Facebook group for women in the drone industry.]  Then I watched a YouTube video by Commercial Drones FM, entitled “FAA Part 107 Test Prep” which went over all 35 questions on the FAA online training course/exam for existing pilots. As a final review this past week, I read the FAA Remote Pilot – sUAS Study Guide, dated August 2016.

DL: Was there anything that surprised you about the test?
KW: I was surprised that most of the questions were not ones I’d seen before from the 40 sample UAG exam questions or the Part 107 sUAS online training course/exam for existing pilots. Some were similar, but only a few were identical. The majority of the test was flight ground school, which the test proctor said is pulled from a bank of over 900 possible questions; the emphasis was on airspace classification and airport operations. I was expecting more Part 107 drone operation questions since I am being certified to fly a drone not an aircraft.

DL:  What advice would you give other people taking the test?
KW: There are plenty of free study resources out there if you have the discipline to create your own study schedule and stick to it. If you have a pilot’s background, then the FAA Remote Pilot – sUAS Study Guide is a good refresher. The FAA online training course/exam for existing pilots is pretty straightforward if you’ve studied the Part 107 Advisory Circular, AC 107-2. If you do not have a pilot’s background like me, then you should devote more time to familiarizing yourself with the ground school topics especially the Aeronautical Charts and Airport Classifications. In either case, a costly study course is not necessary in my opinion.

*DL Note: See “How to Pass the Part 107 Test, Part 2” later this week for an extensive list of study guides, groups, and resources.

DL: Any other thoughts about the Part 107 test?
KW: Our national airspace is very complex and heavily regulated. It is obvious from this exam that the FAA wants drone pilots to know exactly what they might encounter in the skies when launching their drone in order to fly safely and responsibly. This certification has helped me appreciate that and will enable me to move forward with confidence anywhere I may be asked to fly.

2drone_galsYou can see some of the 2Drone_Gals phenomenal work on Instagram or Facebook; or catch up with Kim and Makayla in a few weeks when they’ll be appearing at the InterDrone Conference in Las Vegas.



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Yuneec Looks to Crack Mass Market with the Breeze Drone


breeze_final.33

Yuneec today announced a new, low cost drone, the Breeze, targeted squarely at the consumer market. This is Yuneec’s effort to tap into a broader mass market with a product that is easier to use and less price prohibitive than their Typhoon. It is a space that is seeing a lot of development and yet to see a winner. Could this be it?

To date drones targeted at consumers have been flying toys, racing drones, or fairly sophisticated aerial cameras that require skill both to fly and produce good images. There are several companies that have taken a stab at making the flying easier. Airdog and Hexo+ both have drones aimed at relieving users of the need to operate by having pre-programmed, autonomous flight paths (e.g. orbit, follow me, etc). However, these are still fairly high priced (~$999 plus cost of camera.) Just last week PowerVision announced the PowerEgg. Other targeted at this market include Parrot’s Disco. And still others that have been promoted but have yet to take off, most noticeably the Lily.

Now there is the Breeze which Yuneec calls “the ultimate flying camera.” It is controlled via mobile device, has five flights modes and is capable of seamlessly sharing output on social media channels. Here is the kicker – the suggested retail price of $499.99. That is competitive.

As with the PowerEgg, Airdog, and others looking to tackle this space, the Breeze has a compact size making it easier to transport. It is designed to fly both indoors and out and is “intuitively” controlled by either an iOS or Android mobile device using the “Breeze Cam” APP. The app enables users to download the aerial photos and videos instantly and share across their favorite social media channels: Facebook, Twitter, Youtube, Instagram and Whatsapp.

“With the popularity of selfies at an all-time high, we set out to create the ultimate, user-friendly flying camera which allows people to take their photos to new heights,” said Tian Yu, chief executive officer of Yuneec International. “The Breeze includes the Ultra HD and flight mode capabilities of our top end drones, and because of its size and ease of use, the Breeze seamlessly integrates into just about any activity, whether it’s a first time outdoor adventure or yearly gathering with friends and family.”

The Breeze is blowing into town just in time for the holidays. Let’s see how it plays.

For more information visit yuneec.com.



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Icelandic Photographer Captures Northern Lights by Drone


It’s a sad fact, but most of us don’t live in places beautiful enough to do justice to the capabilities of today’s drones. 4K footage is great and all, but to really make the most of your drone’s potential you probably need to leave the city behind and find somewhere remote. You might even have to leave the country and go in search of some landscapes really worthy of your aerial camera’s attention.

Luckily for photographers based in Iceland, a lack of potential subjects has never been a problem. As well as being home to some of the world’s most devastatingly beautiful landscapes, the country is also a place where you can witness the mystical Northern Lights. Local photographer and drone pilot Oli Haukur, of OZZO Photography did exactly that with his drone, and the resulting footage is pretty unbelievable. Take a look for yourself…

Haukur hooked up his Sony a7S II digital camera, fitted with an ultra-wide Sigma 20mm f/1.4 lens, to a DJI Matrice 600. Among the scenes he captured from the air is the incredible sight of the Northern Lights glowing above Iceland’s Reykjanes Peninsula.

DJI’s Matrice 600 was launched last April and offers high frame rates and HD live-streaming capability at distances up to five kilometers. It carries the Ronin MX gimbal, which is compatible with a number of cameras from Arri, Black Magic, Canon, Panasonic, RED, Sony and Nikon. Its maximum load weight is around 4.5 kilograms.

Northern Lights Iceland

Northern Lights by Drone – Oli Haukur / OZZO Photography

Back then Senior Product Manager Paul Pan said that “The M600 is the most powerful and easiest-to-use professional platform DJI has ever produced. We’ve pre-programmed all M600 platform data and information into the A3 flight controller, remote and transmission system to minimize setup and get you flying as quickly as possible.”

If you’re feeling inspired by Iceland’s aerial photographers, a similar setup from DJI will set you back around $6,000, not including the camera.



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DroneLife Exclusive: Police Groups Address Drone Issues


policeBritishdroneAs more law-enforcement agencies welcome UAV deployment as an effective force multiplier, police associations – groups that represent and empower police officers – are taking notice.

DRONELIFE recently contacted several domestic and international police organizations to gauge the “drone buzz” among police agencies. Although some chose not to comment or had not yet established a view on the issue, others are tackling the future of drone use head on.

The National Sheriffs’ Association is seeing a sharp interest in drones pop up among its thousands of members. The group, based in Alexandria, Va., is “dedicated to serving the Office of Sheriff and its affiliates through police education, police training, and general law enforcement information resources.”

Given its mission, it’s not surprising to see the NSA’s membership look to its leaders for advice on drone deployment and training.

“Two years ago, we received several questions [about drone] training and liability,” Deputy Executive Director John Thompson said in an exclusive DRONELIFE interview.

Since county-level sheriff’s offices usually cover more square miles than their municipal counterparts, it makes sense the agencies may find drones more useful.

And, since sheriff agencies would arguably use drones more for search and rescue in remote regions and less for crime-surveillance, privacy issues are not as evident. In fact, Thompson says the NSA has not received any drone-related privacy questions.

Although the NSA offers several training seminars for sheriffs, Thompson said the group is still considering its options for in-depth classes about drones.

“We have inquired of several universities about a training program on the proper use, privacy requirements and liability,” Thompson said. “As of this date, we have not done anything.” The NSA did, however, offer the Airborne Law Enforcement Association’s “UAS Operations Course” during a 2015 expo.

According to an NSA magazine article last year, drones may be able to fill a dire need for cash-strapped sheriffs who can’t afford manned aircraft. “Less than 225 of [sheriff] agencies have manned air support units,” wrote police-drone expert Alan Frazier.

And Frazier would know — he leads the UAS unit for the Grand Forks County Sheriff’s Office in North Dakota and is considered a pioneer in UAS aviation.

In order to address the funding gap for small departments, Frazier’s department received FAA approval in June to deploy the Northeast Region Unmanned Aircraft System unit on an as-needed basis to any domestic law enforcement agency. Frazier emphasizes training as the most important factor to address and Thompson agrees.

“It is likely [drones] will be useful tool for law-enforcement but agencies must be trained on the proper use, privacy laws and the liability,” Thompson said. “NSA will have to take the lead in providing this training and educating to our members.”

Although the International Association of Chiefs of Police didn’t provide a comment for this article, the group’s Aviation Committee has released guidelines to its members concerning drone use. The group, which includes 20,000 law enforcement professionals from 100 countries, strongly advises member agencies to focus on privacy concerns within their jurisdictions.

“The agency should engage their community early in the planning process, including their governing body and civil liberties advocates,” the report states, adding that police must “assure the community that it values the protections provided citizens by the U.S. Constitution [and] that the agency will operate the aircraft in full compliance with the mandates of the Constitution, federal, state and local law governing search and seizure.”

The IACP warns police that weaponizing police drones “is strongly discouraged.” In fact, the IACP doubts the current state of drone tech would provide “the ability to effectively deploy weapons from a small UAV.”

The recent mass shooting in Dallas underlines public fears of police-deployed, weaponized drones. Following the death of the Dallas shooter, many subsequent media reports have inaccurately labeled the now infamous bomb-carrying robot a drone.

“Public acceptance of airborne use of force is likewise doubtful and could result in unnecessary community resistance to the program,” the report states.

Ultimately, the IACP believes any drone adoption program by police nationwide must be community-based. “Despite their proven effectiveness, concerns about privacy threaten to overshadow the benefits this technology promises to bring to public safety.”



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3DR Supports Part 107, Asks for Micro Category


3drCalifornia-based drone manufacturer 3DR, the US’ largest drone manufacturer, has made a public statement in support of Part 107 – but asks that the FAA move quickly to consider a micro drone category.

3DR contributed with other industry leaders on the FAA’s Advisory Review Committee (ARC).  The ARC was instrumental in helping to get the Small UAS Rule published, and in forming commercial regulations that did not require that drone operators carry a pilot’s license.

While the 3DR statement supports the regulations – and has produced materials and study guides to help commercial drone operators to obtain their Certificate (see below) – the company says that rule should be expanded to include fewer restrictions for a broad category of micro drones.

“The Part 107 Rule is a major advancement in the liberalization of the skies for small, autonomous vehicles and it sets an excellent foundation for future regulations as well,” says the statement. “…With time, the empirical data collected will provide an opportunity to lower the regulatory barriers even further for the smallest class of drones, the micro category, which are inherently safer.”

“This “micro category” could someday allow a “sandbox” approach like what the FCC used to open the airwaves for Wifi and other open-spectrum wireless technology,” says 3DR CEO Chris Anderson. “That created a huge industry and changed the world — a precedent that bodes well for the future of commercial drones, too. Just as Wifi accelerated productivity inside the office, so too will commercial drones dramatically improve the productivity and safety of construction sites, mining and surveying.”

The idea of a micro drone category is not a new one; the drone industry has advocated for regulations to include a broad based, low risk category of drones for several years.  In both the House and Senate, a micro drone proposal was added in to draft versions of the FAA Reauthorization Bill.   Last year, the FAA formed a committee to explore the concept but concluded that they would not support size-based regulations.  But 3DR says that the time is now, as the commercial drone industry gears up for huge growth due to the release of Part 107:

“Leaders from innovative companies who have looked at drone usage in the past, but found the Sec 333 process too cumbersome, are recognizing that now is time to invest, and the FAA is anticipating dramatic investment,” says 3DR.  “To give a sense of the scale, the FAA was able to offer a little over 5,000 exemptions to fly drones commercial with Sec 333. They now estimate that over 600K drones will be sold in 2016 because of the introduction of Part 107.”

In the meantime, 3DR is encouraging all commercial drone operators to take the exam and receive their Certificate; and they’ve provided some free resources to help as many operators as possible to pass the Part 107 test.

3DR’s free Part 107 Resources:

FAA Drone Rules: Your all-in-one guide featuring all the test resources needed for taking the exam
Practice Exam: An interactive practice exam featuring questions from the FAA practice test and more
Where to Take the Exam: A map to help you find locations where you can take the test
Expert Study Guide: A study guide compiled by a former commercial pilot with 10 years of experience teaching preparation courses for FAA exams



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Part 107 Effective Today


Part 107

Image: CSIRO, CC 3.0

After a long wait, the Small UAS Rule – affectionately known as Part 107 in the drone industry – becomes effective today.  The FAA says that over 3,000 commercial drone operators have registered to be among the first to receive their Remote Pilot Certification with UAS Rating – a commercial drone operator’s license.

At a press conference this morning, Secretary of Transportation Anthony Foxx called the release a “great and momentous occasion,” and says that the new regulation ensures that “innovation and technology have an opportunity to flourish.”  Foxx promised that the FAA would continue to move drone integration forward: “This is not an isolated set of rules… it is part of an administrative push,” says Foxx, saying that President Obama has been a “strong partner” in attempts to encourage industry while striking “the right balance between innovation and safety.”

FAA Administrator Michael Huerta also lauded the “virtually limitless possibilities” of the drone industry, and promised that rules about flight over people would be finalized by the end of this calendar year.

While commonly understood to apply primarily to commercial operators, drone law expert and writer John Goglia revealed in Forbes magazine last week that some recreational drone operators may also need a drone operator’s license: specifically, drone racers and others flying FPV (first person view) and those recreational operators who are not members of the AMA or other similar community organization.

For commercial operators, the change is significant: the long, expensive, and often onerous process of applying for a Section 333 Exemption has been eliminated, and operators no longer require a manned aircraft pilot to be part of the 2-person crew.  Many commercial operations who have been waiting to go public until they could do so legally have embraced the new system, which requires that an operator pass the “Aeronautical Knowledge Test” and undergo a TSA background check before receiving their certificate.

The FAA says that Part 107 is designed to allow “routine commercial drone operations.”  A Remote Pilot Certificate with UAS Rating allows commercial operations within the confines of regulations; those limitations include BVLOS (beyond visual line of sight) flight and flight over people.  However, the FAA has also announced that they have implemented a simplified waiver system for commercial operators to apply to operate outside of those restrictions; and Huerta says that 76 waivers were processed today, the first day of implementation.

For now, drone flyers who want to operate commercially should start by reviewing Part 107 here (the complete rule can be found here.)  Operators should then register for a test at an FAA Approved Test Site, listed on this page.

While opinions vary about the true impact of Part 107 on the commercial drone industry, there is no question that there will be more commercial operators: the FAA estimates that there will be 600,000 new commercial drone operators over the course of the first year that Part 107 is active.

 

 



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Your Monday Morning Police Drone Briefing


police-droneLaw-enforcement agencies nationwide continue to stay in hot pursuit of emerging drone technology. So, once again, DRONELIFE issues an All-Points Bulletin for public-safety UAV news:

Georgia

In McDonough, local commissioners have OK’ed the purchase of two high-end drones using more than $18,000 seized from drug raids. In addition to a DJI Phantom 3 Pro, the Henry County Police Department will buy a Maxsur Seeker SAR Compact, a specialty drone equipped for search and rescue with a dual-camera thermal and visible spectrum array.

HCPD Special Operations Commander Chuck Simmons says the drones will be used to locate “critical missing people.”

“All missing people are critical, but to us, to have this special title, it involves a situation with a missing younger child or elderly person or someone with a mental illness, like dementia or Alzheimer’s, to make it even more dangerous,” Simmons told the Henry County Herald.

Connecticut

Police usually rely on the generosity of taxpayers when buying a drone, but a small agency in Connecticut benefited from a mystery donor.

An anonymous resident donated $10,000 to the Plainfield Police Department to buy a DJI Inspire UAV with thermal imaging sensors and high-def video. The gift came as pleasant but much-needed surprise to Capt. Mario Arriaga since the department had already kicked around the idea of buying a UAV.

“We just couldn’t afford it and we weren’t going to go to taxpayers for that kind of purchase,” Arriaga told the Norwich Bulletin.

Like many departments, the Plainfield PD plans to launch the drone for traffic-accident investigations, search-and-rescue operations and anti-drug efforts.

“We have a lot of forest here and get a lot of calls for autistic children that walk away from homes,” Chief Michael Surprenant told the media. “Instead of calling for a state police chopper, we can launch this drone for searches, which saves fuel money and in manpower, while giving us the option to search a much bigger area quicker.”

California

Calling drone deployment a “force multiplier,” the Modesto Police Department says its purchase of three DJI models could help locate a fleeing suspect quicker than four or five officers.

To get the public comfortable with drones hovering over local skies, the department recently demonstrated their new purchase in a mall parking lot. Police wanted to emphasize the safety factor by showing how the DJI drones return to the pilot after losing remote connection.

The MPD bought two DJI Phantom 4’s and an Inspire 1. Officials plan to deploy them in the same manner as most law-enforcement agencies – traffic monitoring, SAR and suspect pursuit.

A police spokesperson told the Modesto Bee the dro0nes have already completed a successful mission by helping a water-rescue team navigate through a tough stretch of a local river.

 



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Kespry’s Drone 2.0 Technology Improvements Double Aerial Coverage


Kespry Drone 2.0

Kespry, manufacturer of commercial drone systems, has announced the new Kespry Drone 2.0. The new lighter-weight drone flies twice as long, covers twice the ground area, and has twice the wind resilience of previous model due to a new airframe, battery, and flight system improvements. The new Kespry Drone 2.0 can fly over 30 minutes per flight, covering up to 150 acres at a 400 foot altitude, and operate effectively in up to 25 mph sustained winds and 35 mph wind gusts.

Mike Moy of Lehigh Hanson a large construction materials firm said, “With the lighter and faster Kespry Drone 2.0, Lehigh Hanson sites will be able to map larger areas faster. The expanded ground coverage and obstacle avoidance will allow the plants to more effectively manage their inventories, safely assess mine pits, and help control costs.”

The Kespry Drone 2.0 weighs under 2 kilograms, which puts it in the “Micro UAV” category for streamlined regulatory compliance around the world, and has a lighter-weight and customized Sony industrial camera that captures more geospatial data for detailed 3D models that assist companies in areas like mine planning, operations, inspection and safety.

“We’ve seen increased demand from technology partners like Kespry in the drone and robotics markets,” commented John Monti, director of visual imaging solutions at Sony Electronics. “The new lightweight Sony UMC-R10C is designed specifically for industrial applications leveraging low weight while maintaining high-quality image capture.”

Kespry delivers a fully-automated drone system, which takes off, flies the designated flight path, and lands, all without operator intervention or even a joystick. To help customers operating in congested areas, including applications like roof inspections for insurance claims, the new Kespry Drone 2.0 is the first automated drone system that includes an on-board LiDAR sensor that automatically detects and avoids obstacles like trees, cranes, and buildings.

The Kespry Drone 2.0 continues to be the only fully automated and integrated commercial drone system that’s easy for companies to deploy at scale.

Kespry Drone 2.0 - 2



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PowerEgg and Parrot Disco make it a big week for consumer market


It’s been a big week in the consumer drone market. Two exciting launches have helped reinvigorate interest in a sector where – at least since the release of the DJI Phantom 4 and Yuneec Typhoon H – things at the top of the spectrum have become a foregone conclusion.

It’s about time DJI and Yuneec had some worthy challengers at the top end. This week two have emerged from opposite levels of obscurity. Parrot’s new drone, the Disco, was initially unveiled at CES earlier this year to plenty of excitement – it’s been a matter of time until it hit the shelves. But the PowerEgg, from PowerVision, although expected, comes from a company with no prior history of putting together drones for the consumer market. So how do these two drones compare? And how will they stack up against the established contenders?…

Design

Both look set to shake things up for a number of reasons. The first is simply design. The PowerEgg and Parrot’s Disco drone are approaching aerial photography from a totally different angle to industry leaders DJI.

parrot disco drone

The Disco is a fixed-wing plane powered by a single prop, while the PowerEgg folds up into what looks like a cross between a fortune teller’s orb and an egg from Alien vs Predator. The Disco’s fixed-wing form make it lightweight and extremely efficient in the air, giving it a top speed of 50mph and over 45 minutes of flight time. PowerEgg looks like nothing else on the consumer market, which is perhaps a selling point in itself. But the fact that it can be neatly tucked up into an egg shape should make it less hassle to carry around than its competitors.

PowerEgg

Powervision wanted to create a beautiful yet functional design for the PowerEgg. We think the oval shape is not only clean and pure but also has the structural and functional benefits. This simple yet vital design means that this is more than a flying robot, it’s a work of art.” – CEO Wally Zheng

A nice design point for Parrot – The Disco takes off with a simple throw into the air, before climbing to a preset altitude and circling while it awaits further instructions.

Range

Both the Disco and the PowerEgg come with a range ready to compete with the players at the top of the market. The PowerEgg can deliver real-time video transmission from up to 3.1 miles (5km) away – on top of this, the images sent back to your monitor are in HD.

Parrot’s new Skycontroller 2 comes with an XS-format Wi-Fi MIMO remote control, which offers a not too shabby 1.2-mile range.

As long as flying beyond the line of sight remains against the rules, these drones are able to take you right up to the edge.

Camera quality

This is maybe where the Disco falls short of the existing competition and the new PowerEgg – It has a built-in 1080p Full HD, 14-megapixel wide-angle lens camera, which comes with full stabilization, but doesn’t have the picture quality of some of its rivals. The PowerEgg on the other hand, has an integrated 4K UHD camera that can produce professional-grade photographs and videos with panoramic 360-degree views on a 3-axis gimbal.

These are compared to the Phantom 4 and the Typhoon H, which both include non-detachable 4K, 12 MP cameras connected to three-axis gimbals.

From an aerial photography perspective, if you’re willing to sacrifice image quality for flight time and speed, the Disco is for you – but it looks as though the fabled package of all three isn’t here yet.

Durability

In its compact egg shape, the PowerEgg seems designed to be durable in transit. But what it’s like in the air or when it’s inevitably involved in a crash, we can only speculate. The Disco, on the other hand, appears to have been built with potential accidents in mind. The wings are crafted out of expanded polypropylene, and are designed to snap off on impact, leaving just the rugged central unit. These wings can be easily repaired, but Parrot also has plans to sell spares for what we expect will be a fairly cheap price. In short, the Disco is a top-end drone that you can crash into trees over and over again. This makes up for its lack of obstacle avoidance

In short, the Disco is a top-end drone that you can crash into trees over and over again. This makes up for its lack of obstacle avoidance tech, and means you’re unlikely to be left infuriated when your piloting skills let you down. As far as we can see, DJI’s Phantom 4 and Yuneec’s Typhoon H, although both fitted with obstacle avoidance tech, wouldn’t handle impact anywhere near as well as the Disco.

PowerEgg_GIF

Price

At $1288, the PowerEgg is cleverly priced above the DJI Phantom 4 ($1199) but below the Yuneec Typhoon H ($1299). Parrot’s Disco drone will be available for $1299 on the company’s website in September. With the prices so close, clearly the two main contenders at the top of the consumer market have some new competition.



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AeroVision Flies Beyond Line of Sight


aerovisionCanadian commercial drone company AeroVision Canada is seeking a waiver from Transport Canada for BVLOS (Beyond visual line of sight) flight.

In Canada, as in the US, commercial operators are required to have their drones in sight at all times.  While for some applications the restriction does not cause a problem – aerial photography of a building or a small area, for example – the rule complicates many industrial applications of commercial drones, such as the inspection services of energy pipelines or long coastal regions that AeroVision specializes in.

Currently, the company must place personnel at points all along the path that the drone will take.  AeroVision’s CEO, Trevor Bergmann, tell the Chronicle Herald in Canada that having personnel watch the drone is unnecessary when the precise location of sophisticated commercial drones can be monitored at all times.  The company uses the DJI S1000 Plus, with a Sony A7R camera and thermal imaging capability.  In an interview with the Chronicle Herald Bergmann estimated that a waiver allowing BVLOS flight would mean a five to tenfold increase in revenues for the company.

AeroVision expects a decision from Transport Canada within the next 60 days.

In the US, the FAA’s recently published Small UAS Rule, which will take effect on Monday, prohibits BVLOS flight.  The FAA has said that they will prioritize commercial drone regulations such as flight over people and BVLOS flight over the next year.

If Transport Canada grants a waiver to AeroVision, other regions may be able to use them as a test case example to demonstrate the process and address any issues that they encounter. Many industries would benefit from the easing of BVLOS flight regulations; including agriculture, energy, natural resource management, and – the one most publicly hyped – drone delivery.  Retail giant Amazon announced recently that they have begun to test the application in the UK; Google is now testing drone delivery, complete with BVLOS flight, in collaboration with the FAA in designated secured testing areas.

 

 



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