Low altitude authorization and notification capability (LAANC) for drone pilots has gone live at the sixth and final wave of airports, comprising the Central North region of the United States. As of Sept. 13, 470 airports and 288 air traffic control facilities across the country have LAANC capability, according to the FAA.
The Part 107 small UAS rule requires drone operators to obtain FAA authorization to operate in controlled airspace. LAANC lets operators use third-party services to receive near-real-time responses on authorization requests, dramatically decreasing wait times.
The current LAANC program is a nation-wide beta test that has been periodically rolled out throughout the country hinging on a partnership between the government and industry as part of the FAA and the U.S. Department of Transportation's efforts to more smoothly integrate drones into the national airspace.
LAANC capability was added at the first wave of airports, the Central South region, in April, when acting FAA Administrator Dan Elwell announced the effort, and additional regions have been added on a monthly basis since then.
The companies that have completed the steps to provide LAANC services are Harris, Airmap, Project Wing, Thales and Skyward. Here is a list of participating airports and airspaces.
Operators requesting authorization for airspaces not participating in the LAANC program must use the legacy manual process for application, which also remains an alternate option for participating airspaces.