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Old Dec 02, 2012, 10:18 AM
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I'm coming in late to this thread. I was extremely happy with the new AMA guidelines. No more buddy box and everything else was logical. I think people sometimes forget these are not laws.. they're guidelines. If you don't follow them, you're not covered by insurance. These guidelines are only "Rules" at some AMA club fields that basically state "The AMA Guidelines are our Rules".
The only laws here are the FAA laws like 'don't fly within 5 miles of an airport unless you get permission from the control tower' and some altitude, distance, weight, and speed limits . The laws are specific for public (aka government) vs private (aka commercial) sUAVs. However.. it looks like it is still going to be virtually impossible to get a private COA and, even if you get one, you're not allowed to fly for profit? Why else would you want one?

Does anyone on this forum have a private/commercial COA for their kit?
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Old Dec 02, 2012, 12:41 PM
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The concern is that if the ama is given control over civilian uavs you have to follow their rules to be legal in flying one, it will no longer be a set of recommendations. You would have to have a coa to fly outside their rules vs just being uninsured.

so if you are in the countryside alone, away from people, and you fly at 50 feet alt without a spotter you will be an illegal uav pilot even though safety issues were just fine.

it will actually be breaking the law which i find concerning. Nothing has happened yet its just what may happen. The trend its that lone uav pilots, all of us here, won't just be uninsured they must follow a unifying set of rules to fly anywhere legally. As Gary said it could be worse

It could be made that a coa is required for all uavs at least this is still a civilian self regulation option.
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Old Dec 02, 2012, 02:20 PM
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And just to clarify the mechanism by which AMA rules may become law.
The assumption is that FAA's new rules will either have no amateur exemption, or it will be so
onerous that nobody can reasonably follow it.
That leaves us operating under the new amateur modeling exemption passed into law
as part of the last FAA re-auth bill. http://www.modelaircraft.org/files/HR658_020112.pdf
One provision of that exemption is
"(2) the aircraft is operated in accordance with a community-based set of safety guidelines and
within the programming of a nationwide community-based organization;"


AMA is positioning themselves to become *the* community-based organization.

That means that to fly in compliance with the new modeling exemption you'll have to
follow AMA's rules, which means they effectively carry the force of law.

And yes, my concern is the same as branflakes. That flying safely by myself under 50 feet
AGL, I'm still going to get hassled by local LEOs (it's already happened to some),
park managers, or other anti-FPV AMA members (also has happened).

ian
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Old Dec 02, 2012, 02:50 PM
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You need to remember that the FAA cares just as much about hitting something on the ground as another aircraft. So if you are flying below 50ft AGL and whack a yellow school bus full of kids because you didn't spot it in time, you may get a visit from them.
The mid-air collision is only one aspect of the concern about integrating small UASs into the airspace. They need to worry about these things falling out of the sky onto people and property because they are no longer operating in "sterile" environment like test ranges.
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Old Dec 02, 2012, 04:38 PM
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I don't fly FPV right now, but want to at some point into the future, so I put some thought into the topic of sensible (to me, anyway) regulation of it.

First of all, any FPV flights conducted within the normal flight regimes of current, legal R/C aircraft line of sight (LOS) flights should not be affected in any way by regulations beyond those currently in place for non-FPV aircraft. That seems to be the AMA's position right now.

Next, what are the factors which could make FPV flights more dangerous to the general public than standard R/C flights? I've thought of a few, but there are probably more. Those are the factors we should pro-actively work to fix, preferably thorough the use of new technological capabilities since technology is advancing so rapidly.

1. Lipo fires due to impact - when flying LOS, any fire will most likely be seen and extinguished (hopefully); not so for beyond LOS. Fix? - Mandate hardened, internally padded lipo cases and replaceable, in-line fuses in battery leads or ?

2. Loss of locational awareness leading to intrusion into controlled airspace or loss of control resulting in rogue aircraft. Fix? - Mandate OSD systems with displayed GPS coordinates and altitude with return to launch site capability upon control signal loss and with restricted airspace boundary coordinates in user programmable flash memory for restricted airspace auto-avoidance (coordinate file would be community or OSD manufacturer created).

3. Collision with manned VFR aircraft. Fix? - Mandate high visibility paint schemes (and daylight visible strobe if possible without impractical power consumption), foam construction, low sectional density overall with high density components surrounded by cushioning foam, some kind of maximum weight limit, modified US VFR rules (in the US) for all FPV flights:

a. Flight below 500 ft AGL allowed
b. Max altitude limited to below18,000 ft (MSL)
c. Above 500 ft AGL, cruise levels will be at 1000 ft intervals (1000, 2000,
3000 ft, etc.) to create 500 ft separation from manned aircraft
d. No limits on range

I'm sure there are more, so comments about these factors and any additional ones are welcome. That's why I brought this up. Rather than allowing a typical, knee-jerk government overkill regulation of this, maybe we can be pro-active.
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Old Dec 03, 2012, 06:25 PM
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Any idea how KBIA and the University of Missouri are going to get around the apparent ban on commercial RC flights? "Missouri NPR affiliate KBIA has launched a "Drone Program" in the hopes of building drones to collect media, the station tells POLITICO.... We plan to fly only on public lands or in areas where we have explicit permission from the landowners. The result will be a collection of web and radio stories that take advantage of a drone’s ability to gain perspectives and information not easily obtained on the ground."

Are they relying on non-profit status or university affiliation? Non-profit doesn't mean non-commercial, does it?

http://www.politico.com/blogs/media/...am-150409.html
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Old Dec 03, 2012, 08:32 PM
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Bill,
I like where you're going. I think an FPV vehicle certification would be a good idea. Beyond what a COA does, this would require an FPV pilot to demonstrate certain skills such as his/her ability to Return to Home without radio or any visual/telemetry information. The challenge then though is that any modification of the setup may require recertification and my setup changes weekly almost.

To all,
I understand the concern about AMA being 'the community based organization" to make the laws, but I think the AMA really did us a service through this entire ordeal. At one point, it was looking very dire for FPV/UASs. I think it was only through their safety record, lobbying, and hard work that they were able to get it to where it is today. Although I could certainly wish for more, I am happy with how much progress the AMA was able to make and I'd trust that community based organization more than any other that I know of today.
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Old Dec 03, 2012, 11:25 PM
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Er not sure where you got that Kerbob, the AMA are not at the table any more since HR 658. They will have no part of shaping future regs. They worked hard to protect the rights of Jet flyers The AMA will not become the community based organisation as it has nothing to do with professional UAS flying. There needs to be a new community organisation, or RCAPA should be supported. That's how it works in the Uk and it works very well.
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Old Dec 03, 2012, 11:48 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Gary Mortimer View Post
The AMA will not become the community based organisation as it has nothing to do with professional UAS flying.
That statement makes no sense. HR658 Section 336 is an exemption for amateur model aviation *only*.

(1) the aircraft is flown strictly for hobby or recreational use;

(2) the aircraft is operated in accordance with a community-based set of safety guidelines and
within the programming of a nationwide community-based organization;


therefore it makes no sense that the community based organization would or should be
representing commercial interests as you contend. AMA would be, and is a more logical choice.
They helped craft the language of that bill with themselves in mind.
It is not about AMA crafting future regulations outside the scope of HR658 sec 336
covering commercial and public sector operations, but their rules becoming the
foundation of the existing amateur modelling exemption.

ian
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Old Dec 04, 2012, 01:07 AM
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Well in that case what you have now is set in stone
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Old Dec 04, 2012, 07:24 AM
FPV Desert Beta Test Center
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bmschulman View Post
Any idea how KBIA and the University of Missouri are going to get around the apparent ban on commercial RC flights? "Missouri NPR affiliate KBIA has launched a "Drone Program" in the hopes of building drones to collect media, the station tells POLITICO.... We plan to fly only on public lands or in areas where we have explicit permission from the landowners. The result will be a collection of web and radio stories that take advantage of a drone’s ability to gain perspectives and information not easily obtained on the ground."

Are they relying on non-profit status or university affiliation? Non-profit doesn't mean non-commercial, does it?

http://www.politico.com/blogs/media/...am-150409.html
Sounds like they may be under the delusion that landowners can approve the use of airspace over their property.
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Old Dec 04, 2012, 07:35 AM
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IMO nothing except time has changed regarding the future of amateur model regulations since my post of 10/17.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Gary Evans View Post
So we all are on the same page. FAA UAS Conops Version 2 0-1 is a draft document that proposes how sUAV's over 55 lbs in weight and operating beyond VLOS can be integrated into NAS. It has nothing to do with amateur model aircraft.

There will soon be another less restrictive proposal for SUAV’s less than 55 lbs operating within VLOS published. We hope amateur models to also be excluded from that category.

At this time the likely possible outcomes for FPV include –

1) They still could include us in the under 55 lb VLOS regulations.
2) We could be totally excluded from FAA regulations as per FAA Modernization and Reform Act of 2012
3) FAA could as originally proposed approve AMA rules and allow them to be the governing body for amateur models.
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Old Dec 04, 2012, 08:42 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Gary Evans View Post
Sounds like they may be under the delusion that landowners can approve the use of airspace over their property.
All they have to do is say every story is a story *about* model aviation, heh.
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Old Dec 05, 2012, 08:26 AM
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Originally Posted by Gary Evans View Post
Sounds like they may be under the delusion that landowners can approve the use of airspace over their property.
Then so is the Supreme Court of the US.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/United_States_v._Causby
Quote:
The court's decision, authored by Justice William O. Douglas, could have resolved the case on a narrow ground by simply holding that there was a taking of land because the government's flights affected the land. Justice Douglas did reach that conclusion, but then he went much further and opined on what airspace landowners do and do not own. He wrote that "if the landowner is to have full enjoyment of the land, he must have exclusive control of the immediate reaches of the enveloping atmosphere. Otherwise buildings could not be erected, trees could not be planted, and even fences could not be run" . . . Thus, a landowner "owns at least as much of the space above the ground as he can occupy or use in connection with the land," and invasions of that airspace "are in the same category as invasions of the surface."[1]
Keep it to under 400 feet and you are good to go.
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Old Dec 05, 2012, 09:39 AM
FPV Desert Beta Test Center
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Originally Posted by Tarro View Post
Then so is the Supreme Court of the US.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/United_States_v._Causby

Keep it to under 400 feet and you are good to go.
I already commented on this in the other "FAA called me" thread.
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