Digital notice system improves UAS safety near airports

By Patrick C. Miller | March 31, 2016

AirMap and the American Association of Airport Executives (AAAE) have released the Digital Notice and Awareness System (D-NAS) which enables UAS operators to provide airports with real-time digital information about the location of their flights.

D-NAS lets UAS operators send an encrypted digital flight notice to a secure dashboard at an airport's operations center. This can be submitted through different UAS interfaces, including the flying apps provided by such manufacturers as DJI, Yuneec and 3DRobotics.

"Safety has always been a priority for DJI," said Brendan Schulman, DJI vice president of policy and legal affairs. "Providing our customers the capability to easily notify nearby airports of their flights is a huge step forward in convenience and functionality.” 

He said the high-tech notification system complements the safety features DJI builds into its drones, as well as the company’s work with policymakers on practical approaches for drone technology.

According to AirMap, D-NAS connections transmit important safety information to airports, including the GPS location of the UAS flight. Participating airports access the information through the AirMap D-NAS dashboard, providing a map view of flights in proximity to the airport and the option to contact the UAS operator directly.

"We are excited to work with AirMap to improve the safety features of our products,” said Tian Yu, Yuneec CEO. “As an airplane and helicopter pilot myself, I know first-hand how important it is to keep the national airspace system safe."

AirMap said that more than 50 airports across the U.S. have joined the D-NAS pilot program. They include Houston's George Bush Intercontinental and William P. Hobby airports; Denver International Airport; Columbus Air Force Base in Mississippi; Charlotte-Douglas Airport in North Carolina; Reno-Tahoe Airport in Nevada; New Castle Airport in Delaware; Cape May Airport in New Jersey; Fairbanks International Airport in Alaska; and the Oxnard and Camarillo Airports in Ventura County, California.

Steve Runge, division manager for the Houston Airport System, called D-NAS “a game changer for how we will manage low altitude air safety."

"Participation in the D-NAS pilot was a no-brainer for us,” he said. “In the face of growing concerns over UAS operations near airports, AirMap has developed an effective and unique solution.”

Ben Marcus, AirMap CEO and an airline transport-rated pilot and flight instructor, said, "Everyone involved in aviation sees the promise and potential of unmanned aircraft. However, we can't reach the potential of this amazing technology unless we ensure that safety critical information keeps pace with innovation. We are focused on building the tools for unmanned aircraft to safely integrate into the national airspace system."


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