FAA Announces Two Year Agreement to Test Unmanned Aircraft Systems

By Mathew Everett – Guest Blogger

A recent two year agreement between the FAA, Insitu Inc., and the New Jersey National Guard seeks to study the integration of unmanned aircraft systems in the national airspace system.

Insitu Inc. is a subsidiary of Boeing and will be providing two ScanEagle aircraft and related hardware.  Additionally, they will train FAA staff in piloting and maintaining these systems.  The New Jersey National Guard will play host to the flight testing program which will take place in their Warren Grove Range.

Currently UAS operate under special certificates of authorization that are determined on a case-by-case basis.  Most operations are segregated from other traffic as UAS are cleared to operate in restricted airspace.

The program, managed by the FAA’s William J. Hughes Technical Center, will focus on UAS design, construction, and functionality with special emphasis on differences in handling UAS and manned aircraft by an air traffic control.  With more than 1500 UAS currently in production and given their unique capabilities, it is important to develop guidelines for their safe integration into the national airspace system.

Learn more about UAV pilot training at AviationSchoolsOnline.com

Read the full FAA press release at http://www.faa.gov/news/fact_sheets/news_story.cfm?newsId=11479

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