FAA Expands New LAANC Authorization Program

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What is the LAANC? LAANC is the Low Altitude Authorization and Notification Capability.

It enables drone pilots the ability to access controlled airspace near airports through near real-time processing of airspace authorizations below approved altitudes in controlled airspace. Drone pilots can use applications developed by approved UAS Service Suppliers to access the LAANC capability.

On April 30, 2018, FAA will begin to roll out the capability regionally as part of a National Beta Test.

South Central USA — April 30, 2018

Western North USA — May 24, 2018

Western South USA — June 21, 2018

Eastern South USA — July 19, 2018

Eastern North USA — August 16, 2018

Central North USA — September 13, 2018

If you want to fly in controlled airspace near airports not offering LAANC, you can either use the manual process to apply for an authorization or wait until the LAANC is available.

Gold Seal UAV Ground School is reminding pilots (refer to the graphic below) that if you plan on using the New FAA LAANC for automated airspace authorizations, there is a caveat you should be aware of.

2018 FAA LAANC Phase 1 USS Operating Rules V1,2

“Automatic approvals obtained via LAANC are not valid in Class E Surface Area airspace when the weather ceiling is less than 1,000 feet.”

This means that, with an Authorization obtained via LAANC, your normal restriction of remaining 500 feet below clouds is superseded. If there is a ceiling (the lowest layer of broken or overcast clouds) that is less than 1,000 feet AGL, you may not fly under the Authorization.

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More Information on the new LAANC program can be found by clicking here


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