Cutting red tape for Drone Operators

Urban sky with air mobility vehicles in Melbourne

Action is being taken to reduce the red tape burden on remotely piloted aircraft operators.

The Civil Aviation Safety Authority and Airservices Australia are working to streamline approval processes for commercial drone operators around civil controlled aerodromes.

A new digital, automated process for some remotely piloted aircraft operations near controlled aerodromes will be trialled, reducing application processing times from weeks to seconds.

The initiative will save approved commercial drone operators time and money, and cut down on paper-based forms.

The trial to commence late April will take place at three aerodromes.

The chief pilot of remotely piloted aircraft operator certificate holders will be able to apply through a CASA-verified drone safety app for approval to fly in designated areas within three nautical miles of the aerodromes.

The approval, where safe to do so, will be given in real time as long as required conditions can be met.  The digital process will be delivered through CASA’s RPAS digital platform, with Airservices playing a key role in developing the designated maps in conjunction with partner, Queensland University of Technology. Airservices has utilised its air traffic control expertise to understand the safety risks and conduct the relevant analysis required to enable these automated authorisations to take place. 

CASA’s acting CEO and Director of Aviation Safety, Graeme Crawford, said the remotely piloted aircraft trial would offer tangible benefits to the drone industry.

“Moving to digital approval processes is a key initiative for CASA, streamlining interactions and making it easier for operators,” Mr Crawford said.

Airservices’ CEO, Jason Harfield, said the initiative is a great step furthering innovation in Australian skies.

“The streamlined approval process has been a great collaboration between CASA and Airservices and will see faster approvals for operators for access to airspace without compromising on the safety of all airspace users.”

The initiative was announced at the Australian Association for Unmanned Systems RPAS in Australian Skies 2021 conference.

Find out more about the initiative:  www.casa.gov.au/drones/industry-initiatives

CASA media contact: Peter Gibson call 0419 296 446 or email peter.gibson@casa.gov.au

Airservices media: call 1300 619 341 or email:  media@AirservicesAustralia.com                  

Posted on: March 10, 2021

More news

Related topics

Airservices provides safe, secure, efficient and environmentally responsible services to the aviation industry.

Airservices Australia commences build of Australia’s cutting-edge drone traffic management system

Airservices Australia is preparing for an anticipated influx of drones over the next 20 years with the appointment of Frequentis Australasia to develop world-leading, digital air traffic management to safely integrate millions of uncrewed aircraft flights into Australia’s busy airspace. A new analysis commissioned by Airservices predicts that drone flights in Australia will surge from […]

Airservices Australia charts course for 60 million drone flights by 2043

Analysis commissioned by Airservices Australia predicts the annual number of drone flights in Australian skies will surge from 1.5 million a year in 2023 to 60.4 million a year by 2043. The report, Sizing the future drone and advanced air mobility market in Australia, was produced for Airservices to inform the ongoing discussion on how […]

Airservices Australia releases January Australian Aviation Network Overview

Airservices Australia has released its Australian Aviation Network Overview report for January 2024. Highlights include: The Australian Aviation Network Overview is updated monthly. About Airservices Airservices Australia is responsible for the safe and efficient management of 11 per cent of the world’s airspace and the provision of aviation rescue fire fighting services at Australia’s busiest airports. We […]

Airservices’ Aviation Rescue Fire Fighting service top recruit brings the heat

Townsville’s Rhys Siganto, 29, is top of his class, recently winning the much-coveted Silver Axe Award – Most Outstanding Recruit, from Airservices Australia’s Aviation Rescue Fire Fighting (ARFF) service 99th Recruit Course. However, Rhys humbly credits others with his success. He was one of 22 exceptional, new aviation rescue fire fighters to proudly don the […]