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USA Part 107 Flights in Controlled Airspace

Here is the current schedule:

Class D: 10/3/16 (includes surface E)
Class C: 10/31/16
Class B: 12/5/16

I'm not sure how I missed this, but these scheduled dates are actually confirmed on the FAA website along with the statement, "You must request access to controlled airspace via the electronic portal at www.faa.gov/UAS, not from individual air traffic facilities."

The FAA's New Drone Rules Are Effective Today

No word on when or how quickly airspace authorizations requested after these dates will be processed. I wonder if this means that Class D authorizations requested after 10/3/16 (or some other prior cut-off date) will not be processed until after 12/5/16 when they start the review process over again. It all seems unnecessarily ambiguous. They seem to be sticking to the 90 day advance requests for now, but in theory if your request is close to their cut-off date for reviewing a batch, it could be much shorter than 90 days.
 
It is confusing as to what the right thing to do is. You have to read not only CFR Part 107, but AC-107, the FAA's postings on it's UAS web site, and JO 7200.23 before it becomes clear(er) what is expected. The bottom line to me is that the need to apply 90 days in advance to operate in controlled airspace as a commercial operation is too limiting. Although the creation and use of UAS Facility Maps by FAA HQ to approve longer-term operations may be workable, it does not make sense for the occasional relatively short flight within controlled airspace by a commercial sUAS operator. Is the FAA really that concerned about a deluge of calls to ATC? I don't see how it makes sense for a hobbyist to be able to call the facility while the LICENSED commercial operator must wait for 90 days just to be denied!
 
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Mic check 1..2..

Just checking to see if this is still an active thread. I just came across this forum and would like to chime in but the last post was October of last year.

You all still out there and discussing this topic?
 
I should be paying more attention...as good flying weather will be approaching here in Ohio. However, there are so many varying opinions on this and so many people trying to make money off of this...many "drone" attorneys telling us that we need them to make these requests. I've pretty much ignoring the issue, hoping that properly requesting reasonable flight in controlled airspace might work itslelf into a simpler, more efficient process.
 
I should be paying more attention...as good flying weather will be approaching here in Ohio. However, there are so many varying opinions on this and so many people trying to make money off of this...many "drone" attorneys telling us that we need them to make these requests. I've pretty much ignoring the issue, hoping that properly requesting reasonable flight in controlled airspace might work itslelf into a simpler, more efficient process.

To date I have filed for three COAs and received approval for two. I am getting about a three to four week turnaround from the FAA and have not had any rejections filing them myself vs a commercial source for Class D airspace. Do your homework and you should not have any trouble on your own.
 
Thanks for your input. Encouraging to know this can be done by us mortal souls and not with the aid of a paid consultant. Homework always helps.
 
Thanks for your input. Encouraging to know this can be done by us mortal souls and not with the aid of a paid consultant. Homework always helps.

I have not filed for anything closer than 1.5nm from the reported geographic center of the airport. At 1.8nm I asked for and received permission to fly at 150 AGL and at 2.1 nm I received clearance for 200 AGL. My last waiver awaiting approval is for 3.5nm @ 300 AGL. I think all of our flights will be flown between 65-80' AGL to get the resolution I need for utility mapping on a bare site. The first waiver took almost 30 days and the second was a little less than three weeks.
 
I've read through this entire thread and like many of us, remain confused. This is my understanding of the various airspace restrictions - would love confirmation or correction...

Class B - always towered - flight restricted within 5NM of center (i.e. flying at a height of 50 feet AGL 4.99NM from center is technically illegal) - requires waiver or authorization through the FAA site
Class C - always towered - flight restricted within 5NM of center - requires waiver or authorization through the FAA site
Class D - always towered - flight restricted within 5NM of center - requires waiver or authorization through the FAA site
Class E - never towered? sometimes towered? flight restricted within dashed magenta line on a sectional chart but legal without waiver or authorization outside of this line even if shaded because controlled airspace doesn't begin until at least 700' AGL?

By the way, for those of you requesting airspace waivers and getting them, are any of you getting them for general purpose rather than a specific date, time, and flight plan? I'm surrounded by airports here in LA and would love to get something like this for jobs that just pop up and don't have time to wait for specific waiver/authorization requests. Even something like a blanket waiver that approves me for flights up to 200'AGL beyond 2NM from an airport would be great. Anyone know if that's possible?
 
After I get certified I'm hoping to do some work near (1-2 NM) GWS, an uncontrolled private airport in airspace that's G up to 700 feet then becomes class E. Since I'm obviously staying below 400' what steps should I take (if any) to inform manned aircraft that I will be operating in the area? Remotepilot101 recommended making a general announcement on the CTAF channel, but not sure if that's good advice. Might cause more problems than just flying and watching out for other aircraft.

BTW where I want to fly would be somewhat suicidal for a manned aircraft.
 
After I get certified I'm hoping to do some work near (1-2 NM) GWS, an uncontrolled private airport in airspace that's G up to 700 feet then becomes class E. Since I'm obviously staying below 400' what steps should I take (if any) to inform manned aircraft that I will be operating in the area? Remotepilot101 recommended making a general announcement on the CTAF channel, but not sure if that's good advice. Might cause more problems than just flying and watching out for other aircraft.

BTW where I want to fly would be somewhat suicidal for a manned aircraft.

I would contact the airport operator and tell him you are planning on operating close to his airspace and how would he prefer you to handle it. I would also have my VHF tuned to the CTAF and self announce. As long as you are sure that you are within Class G airspace, you should be good.
 
My understanding, and please correct me if I'm wrong, is that if you're in Class G or Class E airspace that is outside the surface area of Class E that at a minimum you simply need to practice "see and avoid" and give right of way to manned aircraft.
 
I would contact the airport operator and tell him you are planning on operating close to his airspace and how would he prefer you to handle it. I would also have my VHF tuned to the CTAF and self announce. As long as you are sure that you are within Class G airspace, you should be good.
The FAA does not want UAS operators broadcasting on CTAFs. Frankly, I don't think anyone does.

Sent from my SAMSUNG-SM-G935A using Tapatalk
 
The FAA does not want UAS operators broadcasting on CTAFs. Frankly, I don't think anyone does.

Sent from my SAMSUNG-SM-G935A using Tapatalk

That's what I was thinking too. I'm sure the lesson was produced last fall while a lot of this was new. I'm more concerned with what might happen if a pilot spots me flying and decides to file a report or call the local PD. Yes, I'll have documentation and all that, but will the local cop know that? When he files a report will the chief let the town council know that there's "lots of nuisance calls about drones, so we'd better come up with a policy." because he doesn't like them or just wants to get his name in the paper? If he files a report with the FAA will that just add to more thinking that SUAS are a logistical nightmare? I just want to fly, I'm not interested in becoming a lobbyist.

Lots of potential cans, lots of potential worms.
 
Every Approved 107 waiver that I clicked on referenced a 333 exemption. I think they are catching up with waivers applied for under a 333 and allowing them to be used on 107 waivers.
I can unequivocally tell you that they are not. I had to reapply for all of my 333 waivers because the rules for operating under a 333 are different than 107.
 
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The FAA does not want UAS operators broadcasting on CTAFs. Frankly, I don't think anyone does.

Sent from my SAMSUNG-SM-G935A using Tapatalk
@Jason1234 I would love to know your reference for this. The FAA is all about safety in the National Airspace. If a non-towered airfield has a CTAF, and an operator with a remote pilots license can communicate his location and intentions clearly, why would anyone not want that? It does nothing but provide situational awareness to everyone involved.

I have an ICOM ground to air radio and have provided CTAF calls on several occasions.
 
@Jason1234 I would love to know your reference for this. The FAA is all about safety in the National Airspace. If a non-towered airfield has a CTAF, and an operator with a remote pilots license can communicate his location and intentions clearly, why would anyone not want that? It does nothing but provide situational awareness to everyone involved.

I have an ICOM ground to air radio and have provided CTAF calls on several occasions.
I think this is well established at this point. UAS pilots are not trained, qualified, tested, or expected to broadcast on CTAF. A manned aircraft pilot has a far different level of trianing, testing, and experience. UAS pilots are not required to use, own, or operate a voice radio in any form. As a private pilot and part 107 pilot I can say from the perspective of a private pilot that I would not want (prospectively) untrained inexperienced and unqualified UAS pilots to clog the CTAF. I realize that others may have another opinion that more info is better, but I believe the FAA at this point doesn't want millions of UAS pilots clogging the frequency of manned aircraft. That not a good solution. See and avoid is the UAS pilot's obligation and responsibility. As a private pilot it's hard enough spotting a Cessna on final. Adding the workload of listening to UAS pilots and fixating on potential UAS conflicts makes flight more dangerous, not safer. Stay off the CTAF and stay away from manned flight.

Sent from my SAMSUNG-SM-G935A using Tapatalk
 
I think this is well established at this point. UAS pilots are not trained, qualified, tested, or expected to broadcast on CTAF. A manned aircraft pilot has a far different level of trianing, testing, and experience. UAS pilots are not required to use, own, or operate a voice radio in any form. As a private pilot and part 107 pilot I can say from the perspective of a private pilot that I would not want (prospectively) untrained inexperienced and unqualified UAS pilots to clog the CTAF. I realize that others may have another opinion that more info is better, but I believe the FAA at this point doesn't want millions of UAS pilots clogging the frequency of manned aircraft. That not a good solution. See and avoid is the UAS pilot's obligation and responsibility. As a private pilot it's hard enough spotting a Cessna on final. Adding the workload of listening to UAS pilots and fixating on potential UAS conflicts makes flight more dangerous, not safer. Stay off the CTAF and stay away from manned flight.

Sent from my SAMSUNG-SM-G935A using Tapatalk
Well @Jason1234, I think it's important on a forum like this to differentiate between your opinion and what you are trying to pass off as something the FAA wants. You are on mobile right now, and can probably not see my signature. You may want to look at it before trying to tell me what the FAA's stance is on 107 pilots. I know that private pilot's license of yours probably has netted you thousands of hours in and out of hundreds of airports. But in a public forum like this, I don't think it's wise to tell people what the policy of the FAA if you are not qualified to do so.
Again, I will tell you that the FAA is all about the safety of the national air space. If that 107 remote pilot has the benefit of someone like you to teach him how to make a CTAF call, then maybe he will feel more comfortable making the effort, and purchasing the equipment. Your post above has an air of superiority because you possess a private pilot's license, and that is not any way to treat anyone. Especially if you are on a forum devoted to them.
 
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