At INTERGEO, Europe’s biggest mapping and GIS Expo held this week in Essen, Germany, AgEagle Regulatory Compliance Manager Pierre-Alain Marchand gave a presentation about the challenges, benefits, and opportunities in European drone regulations. DRONELIFE spoke to AgEagle about the regulation framework, and developing products to match.
The European Union Aviation Safety Agency (EASA) released basic drone regulations last year. The basic regulations defined the roles of EASA and member states, and outlined the basic framework for drone rules. Europe has adopted operations-centric, risk-based regulations – outlined in the graphic below, shared with DRONELIFE. Regulation 2019/947 defines three categories of UAS operations (open, specific and certified).
Understanding the regulations, and the responsibilities of individual member states, is important for drone manufacturers. Get it right, and EASA aircraft certification enables business with all European member states: the first EASA certifications are being granted now. Get it wrong, and you may end up with an aircraft that isn’t approved for the applications it was designed for.
Michael O’Sullivan, AgEagle’s Chief Commercial Officer, told DRONELIFE that the regulations help guide product development and the R&D roadmap for AgEagle’s drone solutions. By working backwards from the regulations, O’Sullivan explains, manufacturers can tailor a solution to meet the specifications of the client’s use case – and is legal to fly in the region or country where they reside.
Matching aircraft to regulations just makes sense. As an example, says O’Sullivan, it’s easier to get ultra light weight aircraft authorized for flight over people, because they pose less risk: AgEagle’s senseFly portfolio of eBee ultra light weight fixed wings received some of the first authorizations for flight over people. As Europe continues to develop defined drone regulations, there are opportunities for drone manufacturers to develop products purpose-built for both application and approval.
Read more about Europe’s drone regulations:
CEO DroneLife.com, DroneRacingLife.com, and CMO of Jobfordrones.com. Principle at Spalding Barker Strategies. Has enjoyed working with and around the commercial drone industry for the last 10 years. Attendance and speaker at Industry Events such as Commercial UAV, InterGeo, Interdrone and others. Proud father of two. Enjoys karate, Sherlock Holmes, and interesting things. Subscribe to all things drone at DroneLife here. Email is Harry@dronelife.com. Make sure that you WhiteList us in your email to make sure you get our newsletter. Editor1@dronelife.com.