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Old Jun 13, 2012, 12:56 PM
Guy Rabiller
Joined Jun 2012
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Rules and Regulation in UK/England

Hi,

I represent a french production team working on a documentary project. Shooting will occur in UK/England.

For this documentary we will need aerial shots from multi rotor helis/drones/uav/blimps.

We are looking for informations about legal rules/laws for those rc devices in UK/England (including radio/frequencies/power rules), the limits of their uses, what's authorized, what's not, etc.. . Informations wich will help us plan ahead what will be possible or not.

Thanks a lot in advance for any informations.

ps: You can also contact me directly through PM or Skype.

Cheers,
Guy.
--
guy rabiller | radfac founder / ceo
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Old Jun 13, 2012, 01:10 PM
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Video frequencies are 2.4 or 5.8ghz only for airborne. 2.4ghz video power is limited to 10mw and 5.8ghz video power limit is 25mw

459mhz UHF is the only legal UHF band that can be used for control. 35mhz and 2.4ghz for control is fine.

Flying must be kept within LOS of a spotter with unaided visual sight of the model during the whole flight
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Old Jun 13, 2012, 01:16 PM
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United Kingdom, England, Gt Lon
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Quote:
Originally Posted by grabiller View Post
Hi,

I represent a french production team working on a documentary project. Shooting will occur in UK/England.

For this documentary we will need aerial shots from multi rotor helis/drones/uav/blimps.

We are looking for informations about legal rules/laws for those rc devices in UK/England (including radio/frequencies/power rules), the limits of their uses, what's authorized, what's not, etc.. . Informations wich will help us plan ahead what will be possible or not.

Thanks a lot in advance for any informations.

ps: You can also contact me directly through PM or Skype.

Cheers,
Guy.
--
guy rabiller | radfac founder / ceo
A BNUC-S certificate is required to fly here for commerical purposes. Its important that you use the model in the exam you intend to fly here because your only allowed to fly the models that have been approved by the CAA. You are also required to obtain insurance.

In the UK FPV frequencies that we can actually use legally is pretty limited 2.4ghz 10mw and 5.8ghz 25mw. I dont know how this would work for businesses as ordinarilly if you wanted more output power from your vtx you would have to get a HAM license but businesses cant use this. A lot of UK FPV'ers use 1280mhz which operates on the HAM frequency is technically not legal because its 'not for airbourne use'. This is a no go for businesses so stick to 2.4ghz and 5.8ghz.

For a long range rc link UK FPVers can use 459mhz (UHF) but NOT 433mhz.

To sum it up as a business your quite restricted because you have to follow everything by the book.
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Old Jun 13, 2012, 01:38 PM
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UK, Greater London, London
Joined Oct 2009
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All good information above but if you fly commercial air frames in France you may be able to contact the CAA directly to obtain permission, although going through the flight tests and air worthiness with EUROUSC is still the mainstream route you still can go via the CAA directly (they apparently still recognize pilot skill via such examinations like BMFA's A & B grading).
A call to the CAA for direct advice would be your first port of call.

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Old Jun 14, 2012, 04:58 AM
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http://www.fpvuk.org/fpv-law/

As above, speak to the CAA at Gatwick. George Duncan or Tony Eagles are best.
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Old Jun 14, 2012, 04:43 PM
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Just picking up on this, are you sure 2.4GHz is limited to 10mW and not 100mW ?

http://www.ukrcc.org/35mhz.html

2.4GHz band - covers the frequencies from 2.400 to 2.4835GHz providing up to 80 channels with a maximum transmitter power of 100mW erp. Automatic frequency selection (no crystals required).
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Old Jun 14, 2012, 04:51 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ian Davidson View Post
Just picking up on this, are you sure 2.4GHz is limited to 10mW and not 100mW ?

http://www.ukrcc.org/35mhz.html

2.4GHz band - covers the frequencies from 2.400 to 2.4835GHz providing up to 80 channels with a maximum transmitter power of 100mW erp. Automatic frequency selection (no crystals required).
Just a guess but thats reffering to rc ground based transmission. The stuff mentioned above refers to 2.4ghz and 5.8ghz for airbourne video transmission the two likely have varied restrictions from ofcom.
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Old Jun 14, 2012, 04:54 PM
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Originally Posted by malcr001 View Post
Just a guess but thats reffering to rc ground based transmission. The stuff mentioned above refers to 2.4ghz and 5.8ghz for airbourne video transmission the two likely have varied restrictions from ofcom.
But your transmitter is always on the ground, regardless of whether the vehicle you're controlling is airborne or ground based
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Old Jun 14, 2012, 05:01 PM
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The 2.4GHz 100mW refers to devices, such as your R/C Tx that use FHSS (Frequency Hopping Spread Spectrum) because they hop over the entire channel band several times per second causing minimal interference to other users of the band.

For analogue, single channel (VTx) then we are restricted to 10mW output.

Having an Amateur Radio (Ham) licence is of no use for FPV in the UK as we are NOT allowed to use airborne transmissions of any kind.


Nigel.
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Old Jun 14, 2012, 05:16 PM
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Originally Posted by Ian Davidson View Post
But your transmitter is always on the ground, regardless of whether the vehicle you're controlling is airborne or ground based
Your getting confused between FPV video transmission and rc transmission. Your rc link will always be transmitting on the ground (in normal circomstances) BUT this is different for FPV vtxs as these could be placed on an RC plane for example and thus be transmitting from the air. RC transmission with FHSS technology and video transmission with no FHSS technology are different and have different applications and thus have varied restrictions.

As Devonboy said having a HAM license doesnt mean sqwat for FPV'ers, although FPV'ers tend to use HAM frequencies even though this is not strictly legal simply because some frequencies are likely to be far more clean than the 2.4ghz band, but if your a business dont even think about it.
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Old Jun 14, 2012, 05:17 PM
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2.4GHz WiFi is limited to 100mW in the UK (20dBm). I guess that must employ some sort of frequency hopping too.
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Old Jun 14, 2012, 05:18 PM
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Originally Posted by Ian Davidson View Post
2.4GHz WiFi is limited to 100mW in the UK (20dBm). I guess that must employ some sort of frequency hopping too.
I would be very surprised if it didnt have FHSS technology or something more advanced.
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Old Jul 17, 2012, 03:14 AM
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Originally Posted by Coyote64 View Post
Flying must be kept within LOS of a spotter with unaided visual sight of the model during the whole flight

So how does one do long range FPV in this country? the 'unaided' visual range of a spotter is only a couple of hundred meters. Does this not negate the need for UHF radio systems?
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Old Jul 17, 2012, 04:20 AM
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Originally Posted by bw459205 View Post
So how does one do long range FPV in this country? the 'unaided' visual range of a spotter is only a couple of hundred meters. Does this not negate the need for UHF radio systems?
Technically, you shouldn't be doing 'long range' FPV (as in, out of physical line of sight of your spotter).

For me, 459MHz UHF R/C is a bonus as it gives greater freedom in control frequency, leaving 2.4GHz and 5.8GHz choice for Video.

Nigel.
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Old Jul 17, 2012, 06:23 AM
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Originally Posted by bw459205 View Post
So how does one do long range FPV in this country? the 'unaided' visual range of a spotter is only a couple of hundred meters. Does this not negate the need for UHF radio systems?
+1 What Devonboy said. UK FPvers still go for 100mw UHF systems because

A: It's 10 times more powerful than a standard 10mw rc 2.4ghz tx not to mention will give you better pentration because of the lower frequency
B: The 2.4ghz frequency is bloated as it is, avoiding this frequency at all costs especially if your flying in a urban/sub-urban area is a good decision.

100mw UHF will still give you a good distance and dont forget its not about the output power of your tx its about your recievers on the other end.
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