“Happy Valentine’s Day” was the message from FAA when the agency on Feb. 14, 2013, issued
the long-awaited Screening Information
Request (SIR) to establish a program to
integrate Unmanned Aircraft Systems
(UAS) into the National Airspace System
(NAS) at six test sites.
Love was indeed in the air as SIR applicants in the form of public-private partnerships consisting of government, academia
and industry began working hard to meet
the tight deadlines and requirements of the
SIR with regard to identifying test range
airspace, safety and airworthiness processes; demonstrating UAS operational experience; and defining research objectives and
economic impact. The final volume of the
proposals is due May 6, 2013, and FAA
stated in the SIR that it will select the six
test site locations by December 2013.