Remote Identification of Unmanned Aircraft (Part 89)
Operation of Small Unmanned Aircraft Systems Over People

The Final Rule on Remote Identification of Unmanned Aircraft (Part 89) was released today and Final Rule on Operation of Small Unmanned Aircraft Systems Over People. They are available on the FAA site but not in the Federal Register at this time. The final rule will become effective 60 days after the publication date in the Federal Register.

There has been much concern regarding the “digital license plate” and how it will affect UAS pilots, privacy issues and the growth of the industry.

Remote Identification (RID) is a necessary step towards integrating UA into the NAS.   Although there are varying opinions regarding implementation.    The FAA has done a great job listening to the +50K responses to the NPRM.

There are some unexpected detailed rules that will be a benefit to many, while there are still many unclear or unanswered questions. This is an overall positive direction.

The final rule for Remote Identification addresses Operating Rules, Design and production rules for manufactures, and other provision.   These rules will not go into effect immediately. There are specific timeframes that will allow for pilots and technology to comply.

Under the final rule, all UA required to register must remotely identify, and operators have three options.

  1. Standard Remote ID Unmanned Aircraft.
  2. UA w/ Remote ID Broadcast Module.
  3. FAA-Recognized Identification Areas (FRIA).

Standard Remote ID will broadcast ID messages directly from the UA using a radio frequency compatible with existing personal wireless devices. This is an improvement from what was expected.  Network-based / Internet transmission requirements have been eliminated.

The information broadcast will be the UAS SR#, Lat/Long, AGL, and velocity.  And control station Lat/Long emergency stats and time mark.

A w/ Remote ID Broadcast Module may be a separate device that is attached or a feature built into the aircraft.  The device may also be retrofit for existing UA.

FAA-Recognized Identification Areas (FRIA) are geographic areas recognized by the FAA where unmanned aircraft that are not equipped with Remote ID are allowed to fly. This section has notable changes.  Educational institutions may now apply for FRIAs as well as community-based organizations.

Final Rule on Operation of Small Unmanned Aircraft Systems Over People has also been released. The final rule allows routine operations over people and routine operations at night under certain circumstances

The rule establishes four new categories of small unmanned aircraft for routine operations over people: Category 1, Category 2, Category 3, and Category 4. The final rule also allows for routine operations over moving vehicles. The rule will eliminate the need for those operations to receive individual Part 107 waivers from the FAA, but must meet the requirements.

Suggested reading for detailed information regarding the newly released rules are found on the website.  Vic Moss and Kenji Sugahara have provided helpful detailed insight to how this will affect pilots and the UAS industry.

Remote ID and Operations over people rules from the FAA have been in the process for a long time.   It isn’t an easy task.  There has been a lot of effort put forth.  With this, there will be new methods and new equipment developed.   This will allow for growth and expansion in some ways, while putting restrictions and limitations on others.   As the industry moves forward safety is always top priority.

Submitted by:
Desi Ekstein
President, On The Go Video
Women And Drones Safety Advisor