The Federal Aviation Administration has completed its work to declare six unmanned aircraft test sites in the U.S. as operational by giving that distinction to Virginia Tech in Blacksburg, Va.
Virginia Tech received seven two-year certificates of waiver or authorization from the FAA to help carry out UAS tests in Virginia, New Jersey and Maryland, the FAA said Wednesday.
Research in the three states will encompass agricultural spray equipment testing, development of aeronautical procedures for integration of UAS flights in a towered airspace and development of training and operational procedures for aeronautical surveys of agriculture.
“We have undertaken the challenge of safely integrating a new and exciting technology into the busiest, most complex airspace in the world,” said Transportation Secretary Anthony Foxx.
“The six test sites are going to play a key role in helping us meet that challenge.”
FAA Administrator Michael Huerta, Virginia Gov. Terry McAuliffe, and several other FAA and Mid-Atlantic Aviation Partnership officials watched the Smart Road Flyer UAS demonstrate how it could film a simulated accident scene.
“Flyer” is intended to eventually support research into vehicle and highway systems, the FAA said.