Unmanned Systems Canada is pleased to announce a milestone in Canadian aviation history, with the commencement on 24 February 2017 of regular Beyond Visual Line of Sight (BVLOS) small Unmanned Aerial System (UAS) flights in civil airspace.
Ventus Geospatial of Lethbridge/Calgary, Alberta is the first company to meet the stringent criteria required to fly a UAS under BVLOS conditions, flying at the Foremost UAS Range in Alberta. Working in conjunction with Canadian Unmanned Inc, they will be operating the Aeryon SkyRanger, a world-class, Canadian designed and built multi-rotor UAV. The SkyRanger is a product of Aeryon Labs based in Waterloo Ontario. Additional flights will be conducted with the fixed wing C-ASTRAL Bramor UAV.
“This year we entered our second decade of working with Transport Canada on developing UAV regulations”, says Mark Aruja, Chairman of Unmanned Systems Canada. “We expect the approval
shortly of several more applications for BVLOS operations, at various locations across Canada. This will enable our industry to continue to build value for our customers and stimulate new markets.
We are building the second growth curve. The first, was the creation of 1000 UAV businesses in Canada in only 5 years. The second, will be BVLOS-enabled revenue generation and the sustained growth of those businesses.”
With its expansive geography, natural resources and linear infrastructure, numerous UAS applications requiring BVLOS operations can now be developed in Canada creating a new wave of economic opportunities for markets around the world. The ability to operate BVLOS will allow Canadian companies to build upon over five years of commercial operations experience operating within Visual Line of Sight to grow their businesses to the next level. Access to test ranges such as Foremost will also provide UAS manufacturers worldwide extensive airspace within which to safely prove their technologies to customers and regulators alike.
Companies intending to conduct BVLOS operations in Canada are encouraged to consult the BVLOS Best Practices for small UAS document publicly released by Unmanned Systems Canada earlier this week. This document is based on the recommendations of the Canadian Aviation Regulation Advisory Council Unmanned Air Vehicle Program Design Working Group which is co- chaired by Unmanned Systems Canada and Transport Canada. To access the document, please see:
Unmanned Systems Canada is a national not-for-profit association which promotes and facilitates the growth of the Canadian unmanned vehicle systems community through education, advocacy, and exchange of ideas and technologies.