As you may be aware, AMA participated in the FAA’s Aviation Rulemaking Committee (ARC) advisory panel, which made recommendations to the agency on creating standards for remote identification and tracking unmanned aircraft systems (UAS). The ARC identified technologies to allow law enforcement, homeland defense, national security and air traffic control communities to remotely track and identify UAS in the airspace. Today, the FAA released the recommendations the panel provided to the agency.
One recommendation made by the panel requires that remote ID and tracking should only apply to aircraft that have the capability to fly autonomously, by navigating between more than one point without active control of the pilot, or flying beyond 400 feet using a real-time sensor or camera. This means that model aircraft not capable of autonomous or long-range operations do not have to comply with remote ID and tracking.
An alternative recommendation requires all UAS to comply with remote ID and tracking with only a few exemptions. These exemptions include UAS for law enforcement or under air traffic control, models not capable of flying beyond 400 feet (such as toys) and models waived or exempted by the FAA or a community-based organization like the AMA.
AMA believes remote identification and tracking for certain UAS makes sense at some level, depending on the UAS sophistication and capability. Throughout the numerous panel meetings and conversations that led to the advisory panel’s recommendations, AMA continuously advocated for a common-sense approach to remote identification and tracking that doesn’t harm our hobby or low-risk operations.
Most importantly, we strongly believe that we must continue educating all UAS pilots, which is what truly equips hobbyists and commercial operators to fly responsibly.
As always, please reach out with any questions.