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Can I fly my drone at night?

Yes, but you’ll need to apply for a Daylight Operations waiver:

Part 107 prohibits operation of an sUAS at night, which is defined as the time between the end of evening civil twilight and the beginning of morning civil twilight, as published in The Air Almanac, converted to local time.

To legally fly your drone at night, you or your company/department will need to apply for what’s called a Daylight Operations Waiver. In our Night Ops online course (click to open in a new tab), you’ll get the required training and endorsement certificate, and we’ll help you get your Waiver, which usually takes just a few weeks.

In the continental United States (CONUS), evening civil twilight is the period of sunset until 30 minutes after sunset and morning civil twilight is the period of 30 minutes prior to sunrise until sunrise. In Alaska, the definition of civil twilight differs and is described in The Air Almanac.

Here’s a website you can use to research sunrise and sunset times:

If you’re flying in that 30-minute civil twilight period, your aircraft must be equipped with special anti-collision lights that are capable of being visible for at least 3 miles in all directions.

So let’s take a pause and here and make sure we understand this.

The Part 107 rules state that you can only fly during the day. And that “daylight” is from 30 minutes before official sunrise, to 30 minutes after official sunset. And that if you’re flying during that 30-minute civil twilight period, you need to have lights that are visible for at least 3 miles.

I often get asked what kind of lights satisfy this requirement.

One popular option is a company called LumeCube — if you use the code UAVCOACH10, that’ll give you a 10% discount.

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