FAA and UAVs in the USA

The Tesla Foundation promotes and advances UAV use for all industries
but starts with Entertainment

All UAS operations for commercial or business purposes are subject to FAA regulation. At a minimum, any such flights require a certified aircraft and a certificated pilot. UAS operations for commercial or business purposes cannot be operated under the special rule for model aircraft found in section 336 of Public Law 112-95.

FAA to Consider Exemptions for Commercial UAS Movie and TV Production

The FAA have been working for several months to implement the FAA Modernization and Reform Act of 2012 and move forward with a small UAS ruling. Industries including film and television production have approached the FAA on multiple fronts. The entertainment industry film association MPAA, Motion Picture Association of America has taken the lead filing exemption requests for 7 film production companies.

I just wanted to fly my UAV!

The FAA has come down legally on operators of Drones, UAV, UAS machines in the past 3 months to help stop the overwhelming use of UAVs for commercial applications such as; Entertainment Production, Advertising, Environmental Research, Windmill Repair, Accident & Crime Investigation, Homeland Security, Search & Rescue (SAR), Personal Security, Fire Fighting, Surveillance, Real Estate and hundreds of other applications. Pilot - Operators have gone as far as accidentally flying their aircraft into the side of office buildings in St Louis and New York but have yet to cause serious injury other than light property damage.

Commercial and consumer drone technology has gained mainstream exposure in recent times. Many new companies have explored various possibilities wherein drones can help cut costs and increase efficiency. Recently, Amazon.com, Inc. revealed plans to use drones to deliver packages directly to customers’ doorsteps within 30 minutes. The news went viral and received much attention from both media outlets and curious consumers. The Tesla Foundation has created a LAB to help in solving some of the many problems associated with the soon to be millions of daily flights of UAVs throughout the skies in the United States.

To help in establishing rules of flight for UAS-UAVs, the FAA has created six U.S. test sites to perform research on unmanned aircraft systems (UAS), or drones. The sites are located away from cities and large populated areas where accident and or human injury could happen. Two of the test sites have begun flight testing but all are operated by collages who the FAA has started operations of one of the sites in Texas to study weather patterns, among other things, the U.S. Federal Aviation Administration said on Friday. 

The main focus of the Texas site will be on safety of operations and data gathering in authorized airspace and airworthiness standards, using an AAAI RS-16 drone weighing about 85 pounds (39 kg). 
Specific projects under the wing of a team at Texas A&M University-Corpus Christi include the preservation and restoration of the ocean and ocean wetlands along the Padre Island National Seashore; and research in advance of approaching tropical storms. 

The Tesla Foundation through its CONNECTED FLIGHT LAB has established the UAVSA Unmanned Autonomous Vehicle Systems Association to work in specific areas of development for the safe deployment of UAVs in all industries.

UAVSA is currently drafting a request for an exemption that would permit the unfettered operation of small, Unmanned Aerial Systems (sUAS) in the Entertainment and Broadcast industries that will integrate sUAS into film, television and broadcast news production. This important exemption would improve safety on production sets, increase high paying camera and sUAS pilot jobs and would improve the quality of film, television and news production throughout the United States.

Aerial Cinematographers will operate their sUAS under safe controlled conditions in an airspace that is (1) limited (2) predetermined (3) controlled as to access and (4) provide safety enhancements to the already safe operations in the industries that are currently using conventional aircraft. Approval of this “Blanket Exemption” would fulfill the FAA Administrator’s responsibilities to “…establish requirements for safe operation of sUAS in the NAS.


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