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New FAA Committee to Help Agency Expand ‘Micro’ UAS Safety Requirements

Federal aviation administration (FAA)The Federal Aviation Administration is organizing an aviation rulemaking committee to recommend guidelines for the classification and operation of “micro” unmanned aircraft systems as part of the agency’s efforts to ensure safe UAS integration into the national airspace.

FAA said Wednesday the committee will explore safety standards to help the agency classify which drones should be allowed to fly over non-operators and identify ways for manufacturers to demonstrate compliance.

“Based on the comments about a ‘micro’ classification submitted as part of the small UAS proposed rule, the FAA will pursue a flexible, performance-based regulatory framework that addresses potential hazards instead of a classification defined primarily by weight and speed,” said FAA Administrator Michael Huerta.

ARC, co-chaired by Earl Lawrence and Nancy Egan, will comprise drone builders and operators, researchers, academic professionals and representatives from industry standards bodies.

The agency expects the panel to submit a final report by April 1 and plans to create a rulemaking proposal after the agency reviews the group’s recommendations.

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