Corvallis, Oregon, July 25, 2016 – In late June, 2016, the Department of Transportation’s Federal Aviation Administration announced its new rules regarding the commercial use of small unmanned aerial vehicles (sUAS). The new rules lowered the barrier to entry for people looking to use drones for commercial purposes by offering a new UAS pilot’s certification. The Remote Pilot Certificate (RPC) allows pilots to operate their UAS in uncontrolled airspace with few restrictions. Additionally, pilots may operate in controlled airspace by petitioning an amendment with the FAA, much like the old 333 Exemption process. Unlike the old system, Part 107 does not require pilots to have any level of pilot training. Instead, the pilot must pass an FAA-proctored exam designed to test pilot knowledge of UAS safety, legality, and manned aviation. The first tests will begin when Part 107 takes effect on August 29th.
Research conducted using OSU’s aircraft is not classified as commercial use. Research is considered public use by the FAA, therefor Part 107 does not apply to research work. The important takeaway from this is that researchers will still need to operate under OSU’s COAs to fly. However, Part 107 opens up the option to use a registered aircraft for commercial purposes such as recording promotional material. The FAA will allow public aircraft to act as commercial aircraft at the discretion of the Pilot in Command (PIC).
For more information and a summary of Part 107 visit this link: https://www.faa.gov/uas/media/Part_107_Summary.pdf