In this post, I want to share some of the more common questions we get from students while they’re preparing for their Aeronautical Knowledge Text.
The LAANC program is a partnership between the FAA and companies in the drone industry. The FAA supplies the data, and the companies manage the software that lets you research and apply for authorization.
The LAANC program was created to make it a lot easier both for drone pilots to request airspace authorization and for the FAA and local airport managers to approve the requests. People used to call the airports directly to ask for permission, and that was a mess. Ultimately, it became quite a burden for the local airport managers to understand and process these requests as they came in.
So LAANC fixes all of that. It automates the airspace authorization process and is available at over 700 airports across the U.S. for both non-recreational and recreational drone pilots who are looking to fly in controlled airspace.
Here’s the full list of LAANC service providers:
LAANC gives drone pilots the ability to apply for near-instant airspace authorization using a mobile/web application.
How does LAANC work?
It’s remarkably easy. You open up an app, put in your mission details, and request access.
Here’s a link to our LAANC authorization guide.
Eventually, these new instant authorizations will most likely be incorporated into a larger Unmanned Traffic Management (UTM) system, which will enable the safe operation of drones in what are becoming more and more crowded skies.
What kind of VHR / airband radio should I buy?
Here’s a response we received directly from the FAA:
Unless your airspace authorization or waiver documentation specifically requires you to have two-way radio communications, you would not need that either. Although I still believe you should carry one as a tool to mitigate risk.
So, to clarify, you don’t need to purchase a radio, but having one allows you to tune into aircraft chatter for stronger situational awareness if you plan on regularly flying near manned aircraft traffic.
I have a question about drone registration…
Yes, the drone registration process is straightforward, but we get a lot of questions about where to put the registration number, how to register your drone under a company instead of an individual pilot, etc.
Check out our YouTube video for more information:
Should I get drone insurance? What are your recommendations?
Yes, if you’re flying a drone commercially under Part 107, even though the FAA doesn’t require insurance, the market demands it, and you’d be a fool to bring a flying lawnmower into the air without insurance 🙂 We put together a free insurance guide here.
And check out SkyWatch.ai for on-demand insurance starting $5/hour. Much easier (and cheaper) than working with an insurance broker and underwriter to create an annual plan.
What options do I have to research airspace and Sectional Charts?
Here’s a list of the top tools our students are using to research airspace: