Certified - Next Stop the Arctic


AUVSI's Unmanned Systems 2013 opens today (Aug 12) to milestone - the first FAA type certificates allowing commercial flights of unmanned aircraft in civil airspace.

Armed with their industry-first restricted-category type certificates, AeroVironment's 13lb Puma AE and Insitu's 44lb ScanEagle X200 are expected to begin commercial operations this month off Alaska's North Slope.

Photo: Insitu

Both will fly their first commercial missions inside the Arctic Circle, for the energy sector. The hand-launched Puma is to be used to support emergency response crews for oil-spill monitoring over the Beaufort Strait.

A major energy company, reportedly ConocoPhilips, plans ship-launched flights of the ScanEagle over international waters off the Alaska coast, surveying ocean ice floes and migrating whales in Arctic oil exploration areas.

Both companies praise the FAA for its cooperation in certificating their UAS. “They have been really willing to work with industry to come up with solutions for adopting and adapting regulations intended for manned aircraft and applying them to unmanned,” says Paul McDuffee, vp government relations and strategy for Insitu.

Please or Register to post comments.

What's Ares?

Aviation Week editors blog their personal views on the defense industry.

A Century of Aviation Week

Aviation Week & Space Technology is celebrating its 100th anniversary this year. In a series of blogs, our editors highlight editorial content from the magazine's long and rich history.


Aug 26, 2016

When Aviation Week Was Accused of Treason -- The Back Story Revealed 8

A 1957 revelation that the U.S. was tracking Soviet missile launches from a secret radar in Turkey has its roots in sleuthing of students from Kettering Grammar School in the UK....More
Aug 23, 2016

When Aviation Week Was Accused Of Treason 23

Aviation Week editors routinely get blowback when they write about sensitive topics, and the best example of that may be an October 1957 story that revealed the U.S. had been tracking Russian missile launches from advanced long-range radar units in Turkey....More
Blog Archive
Penton Corporate

Sponsored Introduction Continue on to (or wait seconds) ×