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FAA Announces Expanded UAS Airspace and Night Flight Capabilities in North Dakota
Post Date: Aug 13 2015

By ND Commerce
The Northern Plains (UAS) Unmanned Aircraft Systems Test Site in collaboration with the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) announces the approval to expand operations and night flight testing capabilities throughout the state of North Dakota. This authorization, granted under the FAA’s Certification of Authorization (COA) process, allows the industry more efficient access to airspace for collaborative research. The FAA was able to approve this COA application based on maturity and the demonstrated safety and operational processes used by the Northern Plains UAS Test Site.
“The addition of night flying opens up the opportunities for industry partners to test sensor payloads in all lighting conditions,” says Robert Becklund, executive director of the Northern Plains UAS Test Site.
The Northern Plains UAS Test Site also received a COA that now makes the entire state available for testing at altitudes higher than the 200-foot blanket COA issued to FAA approved test sites. North Dakota is the first Test Site to be entirely covered by a COA that includes airspace above 200 feet for UAS testing.
The FAA recognizes the industry’s needs for safe and efficient access to the NAS to conduct the aeronautical research needed to safely integrate UAS ultimately enabling commercialization of their services. This Northern Plains UAS Test Site COA demonstrates the FAA’s commitment to the UAS industry as well as the capabilities of the Northern Plains UAS Test Site. 
For more information about the Northern Plains UAS Test Site or to inquire about gaining access to our airspace, go to NPUASTS.COM or call us at 701-777-6100.   
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