Research Papers

Impact of flight regulations on effective use of unmanned aircraft systems for natural resources applications

[+] Author Affiliations
Albert Rango

USDA-ARS, Jornada Experimental Range, 2995 Knox Street, Las Cruces, NM 88003

Andrea S. Laliberte

New Mexico State University, Jornada Experimental Range, 2995 Knox Street, Las Cruces, NM 88003

J. Appl. Remote Sens. 4(1), 043539 (July 13, 2010). doi:10.1117/1.3474649
History: Received August 5, 2009; Revised July 6, 2010; Accepted July 8, 2010; July 13, 2010; Online July 13, 2010
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Abstract

Unmanned Aircraft Systems (UAS) have great potential for rangeland assessment, monitoring, and numerous other applications in natural resources management. In order for UAS to become a dependable tool for public land management agencies in carrying out their government-mandated responsibilities, it is necessary to integrate UAS into the National Airspace System (NAS), which includes all aircraft, manned or unmanned. To achieve this, Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) regulations have to be followed to assure public safety. UAS operators need to know that FAA safety regulations, which incorporate line-of-sight restrictions, will only allow slow progress towards an operational system, and they must plan accordingly for the extra time necessary to prepare and complete flight missions. By following approved safety procedures, UAS operators can develop a UAS flight team that is capable of accomplishing missions anywhere in the United States while contributing to a totally integrated NAS comprised of all aircraft systems that can be used jointly for natural resources management. At the same time, it is hoped that FAA regulations will change in the future based on the capabilities and experience of the UAS flight team and on the locale in which operations take place, especially over large, remote, and sparsely populated areas.

© 2010 Society of Photo-Optical Instrumentation Engineers

Citation

Albert Rango and Andrea S. Laliberte
"Impact of flight regulations on effective use of unmanned aircraft systems for natural resources applications", J. Appl. Remote Sens. 4(1), 043539 (July 13, 2010). ; http://dx.doi.org/10.1117/1.3474649


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