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News & Notes

Drone Notice System Will Help Pilots and Airports Communicate

Airports across the U.S. to test new system

March 31, 2016

Above is an example of what the AirMap dashboard available to airport operators will look like.
A new drone-tracking system was released on March 29 by AirMap and the American Association of Airport Executives (AAAE). The Digital Notice and Awareness System (D-NAS) allows unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) operators to provide airports with real-time information on the location of their flights, according to a press release.

While the D-NAS doesn’t automatically send flight information, a drone pilot can easily send flight notifications to a participating airport’s operation center. This allows airports to receive safety-critical information, including GPS location of the flight and to directly contact pilots, according to the press release.

This is especially beneficial to drone-users because this system allows better communication with airports, which is important because of the current law requiring all done operators to alert airports within five miles of a flight location. Flight information can be submitted using a variety of UAV interfaces, including current flying apps provided by DJI, Yuneec, and 3D Robotics.
Airport operators can view a map on the AirMap dashboard that shows drones near the airport.
"Safety has always been a priority for DJI,” said Brendan Schulman, vice president of policy and legal affairs for DJI. "Providing our customers the capability to easily notify nearby airports of their flights is a huge step forward in convenience and functionality. A high-tech notification system complements the safety features DJI builds into every drone, as well as DJI's close work with policymakers on practical approaches for drone technology."

Participating airports will access information sent via drone pilots using the AirMap D-NAS dashboard, which will appear on a map and show all drones in close proximity. Over 50 airports in U.S. joined the program, including airports in Houston, TX; Charlotte, NC; New Castle, DL; Reno, NV; and Fairbanks, AL.

"Participation in the D-NAS pilot was a no-brainer for us. In the face of growing concerns over UAS operations near airports, AirMap has developed an effective and unique solution,” said Steve Runge, division manager for the Houston Airport System. "D-NAS is a game changer for how we will manage low altitude air safety."

If you’re eager to see D-NAS in action, the system will be demonstrated at the annual AAAE Conference and Exposition in May.
Featured image: thinkstock.com