Drone Countdown

Harley Geiger from the Centre for Democracy & Technology, CDT. has laid out a very handy timetable for UAS integration into the NAS in the USA.

His full post is here https://www.cdt.org/blogs/harley-geiger/2703drone-countdown In a second post the CDT lays out the how of the process https://www.cdt.org/blogs/harley-geiger/2703how-congress-should-tackle-drone-privacy-problem

It will be very interesting to see how this all pans out, as long standing readers here will know we abandoned our NPRM rule making countdown clock that used to show on the front page as the date’s changed so much.

Rules for Non-Government Drones

Nov. 10, 2012: Development of a comprehensive plan
The Secretary must develop a “comprehensive plan” to integrate non-government drones into the national airspace system by Sep. 30, 2015. The plan is required to contain several elements, including recommendations on acceptable standards for operation, certification, and licensing of non-government drones. The recommendations in this plan will influence subsequent rulemakings. Sec. 332(a)(1)-(4).

Aug. 12, 2012: Early integration of “safe” drones
The Secretary must determine if certain types of drones (government and non-government) can operate in the national airspace before completion of the comprehensive plan, rulemakings, or guidance required elsewhere in P.L.112-95. The Secretary must base this determination on whether the drone can perform without hazard to the public or national security. The Secretary must develop rules to integrate these drones into the national airspace, though P.L.112-95 gives no deadline for these rules. Sec. 333(a)-(b).

Feb. 14, 2013: Deadline for the comprehensive plan
The Secretary must submit the final version of the comprehensive plan to Congress. Sec. 332(a)(4). The Secretary must also approve and publish a 5-year roadmap – to be updated annually – for phasing non-government drones into the national airspace. Sec. 332(a)(5).

Aug. 14, 2014: Final rule for non-government drones
The Secretary must publish a final rule that will allow small non-government drones to operate in the national airspace system. Sec. 332(b)(1).

Aug. 14, 2014: Proposed rule to implement the comprehensive plan
The Secretary must issue a notice of proposed rulemaking to implement the recommendations of the comprehensive plan. Sec. 332(b)(2).

Sep. 30, 2015: Integration of non-government drones
This is the target deadline for the completed implementation of the comprehensive plan to integrate non-government drones into the national airspace. Sec. 332(a)(3).

Dec. 14, 2015: Final rule to implement the comprehensive plan
The Secretary must issue the final rule to implement the comprehensive plan. Sec. 332(b)(2).