May 6, 2020

Airbus and Amazon are among the eight companies tasked with assisting the FAA in establishing remote identification (RID) requirements to provide identification and location information for unmanned aircraft systems (UAS), the agency recently announced.

The group of companies – which includes AirMap, Intel, One Sky, Skyward, T-Mobile and Wing – will develop technology requirements that will enable other entities to develop Remote ID capabilities that will give public safety authorities the ability to identify and obtain location information for UAS in flight.

“The FAA will be able to advance the safe integration of drones into our nation’s airspace from these technology companies’ knowledge and expertise on remote identification,” said U.S. Transportation Secretary Elaine L. Chao.

The agency intends RID application technologies to be developed simultaneously with the FAA’s regulations governing Remote ID capabilities. The agency first disclosed its plan in an NPRM in December 2019. In comments submitted earlier this year, NBAA encouraged the FAA to reconsider that draft document’s approach to RID, noting a “lack of clarity in multiple aspects of the NPRM.”

While that overarching concern remains, the FAA’s most recent announcement indicates a step in the right direction, said Heidi Williams, NBAA director for air traffic services and infrastructure. “It’s encouraging to see the agency continuing to collaborate with the industry on these rules and standards, which we see as a positive sign the FAA is heeding the concerns of NBAA and others in adopting final RID technological and regulatory standards,” she said.

The remote ID application requirements, as determined by the group of eight companies, will be announced upon publication of the FAA’s final RID rule.