Australian drone pilots can receive automated airspace approval

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Australia’s Civil Aviation Safety Authority (CASA) has announced new measures to reduce the red tape burden on remotely piloted aircraft operators within 3 nm (5,5km) of an airport. Working with Airservices Australia, CASA is trialling a new digital, automated process for some remotely piloted aircraft operations near controlled aerodromes, reducing application processing times from weeks to seconds. The aim is to streamline approval processes for commercial drone operators.

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 a 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.



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