The agency since has stated that 50 applicants
representing 37 states are applying to establish one
of the six test sites.
UAS have served the military in many ways and
for many years. They typically are used in scenarios that would present a danger to human life, such
as surveillance and reconnaissance. Over the past
few years, UAS have been used to deliver artillery
in lieu of manned aircraft.
As we have done with various technologies
developed for military applications, let’s put
UAS to work in the commercial environment.
Commercial uses include wildfire mapping, precision agriculture, law enforcement, weather monitoring, aerial mapping, oil and gas exploration,
communications relay and freight transport.
In 2009, FAA created the Unmanned Aircraft
Program Office (UAPO) to integrate UAS safely
and efficiently into the NAS and coordinate all
FAA certification and operational policy activities
related to UAS. Currently, UAS are operated in air-
space controlled by the
military and research
arms of the federal
government, under an
or under a Certificate of