Aircraft Guidance

This document provides aircraft guidance related to FAA requirements and airworthiness

FAA Requirements

All UAS operated on UW premises or in connection with UW activities must be airworthy and otherwise comply with applicable regulatory requirements. For UAS operations within the United States, UAS that weigh 55 pounds or less-total weight including all payload- are eligible to be operated under the Federal Aviation Regulation Part 107: Operation and Certification of Small Unmanned Aircraft Systems (FAR Part 107). Applicants seeking to operate aircraft outside of this weight limit will be required to obtain specific authorization from the FAA through either the section 333 exemption process or by obtaining a Certificate of Authorization for Public Aircraft Operations. Both of these options entail a lengthy and costly application process. Therefore, it is strongly recommended that operators select aircraft less than 55 pounds for operation under FAR Part 107.


Under FAR Part 107, it is the RPIC's responsibility to determine the airworthiness for UAS that weigh less than 55 pounds. However, the UAS Ethics and Safety Committee reserves the right to deny applicants seeking to operate UAS in connection with UW-related activities if the Committee deems the UAS not airworthy. The Committee may also request a demonstration flight and/or full airworthiness review prior to approving any application for UAS operations to be conducted for UW-related activities.

Keywordsaircraft guidance FAA requirements airworthiness   Doc ID94832
OwnerHeather M.GroupVCRGE and Graduate School
Created2019-10-04 13:22:03Updated2023-11-14 08:13:27
SitesVCRGE and Graduate School
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