Inside Unmanned Systems

OCT-NOV 2017

Inside Unmanned Systems provides actionable business intelligence to decision-makers and influencers operating within the global UAS community. Features include analysis of key technologies, policy/regulatory developments and new product design.

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41 unmanned systems inside October/November 2017 ENGINEERING. PRACTICE. POLICY. would occur, regardless of whether the area of operation and altitude adheres to the fa- cility maps. If, after receiving an operations waiver, an applicant needs to request an airspace authorization, it should include a reference number or waiver number relating to the ex- isting operations waiver. At its recent sym- posium, the FA A offered three strategies for airspace waiver requests:1) only ask for what you need; 2) stay with low altitude requests; and 3) be precise with the latitude and lon- gitude. Smaller operating areas are generally easier to approve. Plans are in the works to automate the process of obtaining airspace authoriza- tions. The FAA 's new LAANC (Low Altitude Authorization and Notification Capability) will provide UAS operators a streamlined solu- tion to enable real time automated notification and authorization. Waivers for BVLOS and Operations Over People Many industr y analysts consider BVLOS operations to be the key to industr y ad- vancement. For UAS to be practical and cost-effective for linear applications such as inspecting railways, pipeline and roads, as well as agricultural applications, aircraft will need to f ly beyond the line of sight of the pilot in command. The FA A believes small UAS operations that occur BVLOS and over people present the highest risk to non-participating people and aircraft. As a result, these operations require robust operational or technology risk miti- gation strategies. The strategies may involve assurances that the severity of human injury would be limited. At this time, however, aviation regulators are in the midst of discussions about how to address security concerns raised by such f lights. These concerns, which arose late in 2016, forced the FAA to delay a planned relax- ation of restrictions that would have made it easier to conduct f lights over people and per- haps BVLOS operations. The FAA currently is working with law en- forcement, security and industry experts to arrive at an approach for such f lights and a way to identify and hold accountable drone operators. Until those issues are addressed, new waivers appear unlikely. Todd Graetz, director of Technology Services and Infrastructure for BNSF Railroad, which has a BVLOS waiver, expects there will be more guidance available from the FAA regard- ing progress toward BVLOS capability by the end of the year. In the meantime, other types of f lights still can take place under Part 107 regulations and, when appropriate, waivers of those regulations. " THOSE WITH NON-AVIATION BACKGROUNDS SHOULD THINK OF SAFETY IN THREE DIMENSIONS, AND UNDERSTAND THAT FLYING A UAS IS AN AVIATION ACTIVITY. THEY HAVE TO RECOGNIZE THAT FAA IS THE AUTHORITY. YOU HAVE TO HAVE A DISCIPLINED APPROACH TO UNDERSTANDING THE ENVIRONMENT IN WHICH YOU ARE OPERATING." Matt Scassero, director, University of Maryland Unmanned Aircraft Systems Test Site Technology for a BVLOS operation needs to be capable of detecting and avoiding manned aircraft. Pictured is PrecisionHawk's LATAS technology.

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