The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) closed comments on its Notice for Proposed Rulemaking (NPRM) for the Remote Identification (Remote ID) of Unmanned Aircraft Systems in early March. Well over 50,000 comments were submitted by remote pilots and organizations that advocate for aviation rights including AUVSI. The FAA is moving forward with rulemaking and it has chosen 8 companies to help them establish technology requirements for future suppliers of Remote ID.

The following companies selected by the FAA, after filling out December’s Request for Information, to build out this framework are: Airbus, AirMap, Amazon, Intel, OneSky, Skyward, T-Mobile, and Wing. The FAA took a similar approach, by partnering with established companies, in the past when developing Low Altitude Authorization and Notification Capability (LAANC).

“The FAA will be able to advance the safe integration of drones into our nation’s airspace from these technology companies? knowledge and expertise on remote identification,” said U.S. Transportation Secretary Elaine L. Chao. The 8 companies will create the requirements needed for providers to properly develop applications for Remote ID. They”Ll provide critical information including the drone’s location and identification to authorities while in flight.

When the NPRM for Remote ID was first introduced, the day after Christmas last year, it drew backlash from individuals and industry leaders alike. Many of the complaints centered around it being too expensive for the average remote pilot to comply, connectivity issues in rural areas, and, of course, privacy. “A Remote ID requirement that is costly, burdensome, complex, or subject to multiple points of failure, will be a requirement that fails,” DJI wrote in its submission.

The FAA defended itself against critics by calling for developing the technology around Remote ID first before releasing the publication of their final rule. As stated in their most recent press release on the matter, “The agency’s ability to develop Remote ID technology simultaneously with the rule enables the FAA to continue to build on a UAS Traffic Management (UTM) system that has demonstrated global leadership through the small UAS rule and the implementation of the Low Altitude Authorization and Notification Capability (LAANC)…”

Once the final rule is published, the FAA will begin accepting applications for entities to become Remote ID suppliers on FAA.gov. According to a recent press release, drones are a fast-growing segment of the transportation sector with nearly 1.5 million in circulation and 160,000 remote pilots currently registered with the FAA.

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