The FAA announced today that it is expanding its UAS Pathfinder Program to include an agreement with CACI International Inc. to evaluate how the company’s technology can help detect UAS in the vicinity of airports. Launched in May of this year, the FAA’s Pathfinder Program allows the FAA to collaborate with industry partners to explore the future of UAS operations beyond what the FAA initially proposed in the small UAS rule released earlier this year.

Testifying before the House Aviation Subcommittee, FAA Deputy Administrator Mike Whitaker said that flying an unmanned aircraft near a busy airfield poses an unacceptable safety hazard. During the hearing titled, “Ensuring Aviation Safety in the Era of Unmanned Aircraft Systems,” Whitaker told the congressional panel that the FAA signed an agreement this week to assess the safety and security capabilities of CACI’s product within a five-mile radius of airports and that the agency also will collaborate with its government partners in this effort.
Continue Reading Moving UAS Policy Forward: FAA Expands Pathfinder Program to Enhance Drone Detection Efforts Near Airports

NFL subsidiary NFL Productions LLC d/b/a NFL Films has received approval from the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) to fly unmanned aircraft systems (UAS) for filming. But don’t expect to see snack deliveries or a drone kiss-cam anytime soon on game day. Like other companies that have received FAA authorization to fly UAS, the NFL affiliate will have to comply with a number of requirements — one of which includes not flying near spectators or general members of the public. Last October the FAA also issued a NOTAM (Notice to Airmen) that criminalized flying UAS over certain large stadiums around the time of scheduled events.

The NFL affiliate filed for a Section 333 Petition for Exemption requesting permission to fly UAS on May 20, 2015, and the FAA granted the petition on September 17.
Continue Reading Cleared for Takeoff: FAA Authorizes NFL Affiliate to Fly UAS