Airspace Guidance for Small UAS Operators


Understanding Airspace is of the utmost importance. It’s something that takes a long time to be comfortable with and to be fully able to comply with the rules governing airspace.

In order to help give you a better understanding, the FAA Safety Team has released Notice Number: NOTC8209Airspace Guidance for sUAS Operators.

FAA Part 107 Continues To Grow

Please use the airspace card (found above) as an aid in dealing with operating in the National Airspace System (NAS).

Airspace Guidance for Small UAS Operators Card

Class B, C, D, and E Airspace is “controlled airspace”

This airspace can be found around airports with air traffic control towers, or those with instrument approach procedures. Authorization from FAA Headquarters is required to fly drones in controlled airspace under Part 107. Do not contact the local air traffic facility for authorization. Operators may apply for an authorization through FAA // DroneZone or through an approved UAS Service Supplier using LAANC. To determine if your operation is in controlled airspace, check the FAA’s UAS facility maps. Click “The Maps” link.

FAA’s Role in Authorizing sUAS Operators In The NAS

Class G Airspace is “uncontrolled airspace”

FAA authorization is not required to fly drones in this airspace under Part 107. Uncontrolled airspace is typically found between airports with controlled airspace. Most U.S. airports are in uncontrolled airspace, so drone operators should maintain situational awareness to ensure they see and avoid other aircraft.

Part 101 Hobbyist: When flown within 5 miles of an airport, the operator of the aircraft provides the airport operator and the airport air traffic control tower (when an air traffic facility is located at the airport) with prior notice of the operation.

For additional information, visit the B4UFLY app

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Kelley stumbled her way into the UAV/ drone industry 4 years ago. With a background in business and marketing, she’s hoping to leave her mark on the industry by changing the way the world views drones.

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