Monday, June 8, 2015
FAA Working Eight UAS Full Type Certificates
The FAA is processing eight applications for full type certification of unmanned aerial systems (UASs), including some with helicopter designs. Larger certificated UASs flying today do so under type certificates issued in the Restricted category; the certificates (issued under Federal Aviation Regulations Part 21.25) limit when and how the aircraft can be flown. Examples include Boeing’ Insitu ScanEagle X200 and AeroVironment’s Puma AE, which were limited to operations in Alaska and the Arctic. Other UASs have received Experimental type certificates, which generally prohibit commercial uses. (The FAA currently requires no type certificate for UASs that weigh less than 55 pounds.) Receipt of a full type certificate would enable a UAS manufacturer to fly the aircraft throughout U.S. airspace. Such UASs would still have to meet FAA requirements for safe separation from other aircraft.