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Chinese and DJI Drones Banned to Only Limited Use

Without question, DJI is the undisputed market leader in today’s drone industry even though some U.S. companies have unsuccessfully tried to challenge its leadership status.  Recently, the Department of the Interior (DOI) independently validated the Government Edition on the DJI Mavic Pro and Matrice 600, partly because of the lack of viable domestic alternatives, but only for non-sensitive missions. In…

LAANC BECOMES REALITY

Recent changes in the FAA law allows hobbyist drone pilots to obtain authorization to fly in controlled airspace, replacing the prior requirement of notifying nearby airports.  U.S. recreational drone pilots can now obtain near-instant authorization from the FAA to fly in controlled airspace near approximately 600 airports. This privilege was previously authorized for professional drone pilots only. The LAANC (low altitude…

FAA to Expand Prospects for Hobbyist Pilots

Recently the FAA announced the expansion of its Low Altitude Authorization and Notification Capability (LAANC) system to include hobbyist drone flyers.  This will greatly expand the ability of drone pilots to gain access to controlled airspace nationwide.  This policy will speed up the time it takes for authorization to fly under 400 feet in controlled airspace.  The expansion means the…

DJI Commercial Drones to be Equipped With ADS-B Receivers

DJI drone manufacturer has announced that by the year 2020, it will be implementing automatic dependent surveillance broadcast (ADS-B) receivers into each of its drone models.  This is a technology used by manned aircraft to automatically broadcast their positions to both other aircraft and to air traffic controllers for real-time precision and situational awareness.  By January 1, 2020, the FAA…

THE DRONE IMPACT

It’s probably impossible to actually measure the impact drones and drone technology have had in so many areas as the industry has moved from a “hobbyist” class to economic, industrial, safety, disaster relief, and many other fields.  While it’s still unusual to spot a drone out doing its thing—be it for fun or for cause—one cannot deny that when used…

DRONES UNDER the CHRISTMAS TREE

Drones under the Christmas tree this year are undoubtedly one of the hottest gift items asked for and received.  They can be found in department stores, electronic stores, discount stores all over the country at prices that make them affordable to the general population.  The sky is probably going to be filled—at least for a few weeks–with every make and…

DRONE SUPPORT SERVICES

We are definitely witnessing an upsurge in the use of drones in public safety missions due to (1) the rapid drone technology improvements, (2) expansion of first responder use, and (3) smart aviation regulations, just to specifically name a few.  Drones can help first responders get an understanding in real time of what damages look like on the ground following…

WAIVER APPLICATIONS

When applying for a Part 107 operational waiver, it’s important that you carefully read and complete the application.  Be sure to pay attention to details as required, do not omit information, or be too general.  The FAA has reviewed 11,345 waiver applications and approved only 16%.  Over 70% of the rejections were for incomplete information and another 7% made because…