Wednesday, June 19, 2024
Industry update

FlyingBasket Secures Italy’s First Light UAS Operator Certificate

FlyingBasket, an Italian drone manufacturer and operator, has proudly announced its achievement of becoming the first in Italy to receive a Light UAS Operator Certificate (LUC) from the Italian aviation authority, ENAC (Ente Nazionale Per L’Aviazione Civile). This significant milestone represents a leap forward in the drone industry, particularly for cargo drone operations.

Moritz Moroder, CEO of FlyingBasket, expressed his enthusiasm about the certification, stating, “The Light UAS Operator Certificate opens up new avenues for our cargo drone operations, enabling us to expand our services, explore further applications, and collect use cases with various clients.” He emphasized that this certification is not only a testament to the company’s commitment to compliance and safety but also establishes FlyingBasket as a leader in the drone industry.

The LUC allows the operator to self-authorize its operations, signifying a high level of maturity, safety, and compliance demonstrated by the operator. FlyingBasket extended its gratitude to the ENAC LUC team for their support and collaboration throughout the certification process. “We are grateful for the trust you’ve placed in our project and company,” Moroder added, acknowledging ENAC’s role in promoting innovation and ensuring the safe integration of unmanned aerial systems into the airspace.

Based in Bolzano, Italy, FlyingBasket specializes in the design and production of cargo drones capable of carrying payloads up to 100 kg. Since its inception in 2015, the company has set a benchmark in the commercial cargo drone industry. In October 2023, FlyingBasket launched its FB3 cargo drone, heralding a new era in cargo transportation.

Cargo drones offer promising solutions for businesses facing logistical challenges, providing new opportunities for growth in logistics, energy, telecommunications, and more. FlyingBasket’s achievement underlines the potential of cargo drones to revolutionize industries by improving efficiency and accessibility in lifting and transportation services.

About the Light UAS Operator Certificate

The Light UAS Operator Certificate (LUC) is a certification framework established under the European Union’s aviation regulations, specifically designed for operators of Unmanned Aircraft Systems (UAS), commonly known as drones. This certificate allows drone operators to conduct specific operations that are considered to have a higher risk than those allowed under the standard open or specific categories without needing to apply for individual authorizations for each operation.

The LUC is significant for professional drone operators for several reasons:

Autonomy in Risk Assessment: It grants operators the autonomy to self-assess the risk of their UAS operations, allowing for a more flexible and efficient planning process. Operators with an LUC can conduct operations covered by their risk assessment without seeking further permissions, provided they remain within the scope of their LUC privileges.

Expanded Operational Scope: The LUC enables operators to carry out a broader range of operations, including those that might fall into the specific category, which typically requires individual flight permissions. This includes operations in congested areas, beyond visual line of sight (BVLOS), or those involving larger or more complex drones.

Enhanced Credibility: Holding an LUC demonstrates a high level of operational competence and adherence to safety standards. It signals to clients, regulatory bodies, and the public that the operator maintains rigorous safety and operational management systems.

Competitive Advantage: For businesses, obtaining an LUC can provide a competitive edge, showcasing a commitment to safety and regulatory compliance. This can be particularly appealing in industries where drone operations are critical, such as aerial surveying, inspection services, and emergency response.

European Recognition: As part of the EU’s harmonized framework for drone operations, the LUC is recognized across member states, facilitating cross-border operations without the need for additional national certifications or permissions. This is invaluable for operators looking to expand their services across Europe.

In essence, the LUC is a key certification for professional drone operators seeking to expand their operational capabilities while ensuring safety and compliance with European regulations. It offers a pathway to more complex operations, potentially unlocking new opportunities and markets within the drone industry.

Wiebe de Jager

Wiebe de Jager is the founder of Dronewatch (available in Dutch and English). Wiebe is an experienced drone pilot (EASA Specific category certified) and has published a number of bestselling books about drone photography and cinematography.

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