Following a comprehensive review and demonstration in September, Applied Research Associates Inc. (ARA) has received a Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) special airworthiness certificate for its Nighthawk IV micro-unmanned air system (UAS).
ARA says the Nighthawk is operating at its Randolph, Vt., location for the purposes of research and development, customer demonstrations and crew training. The company notes that this special airworthiness certificate is supported by extensive safety, manufacturing, inspection, maintenance and crew training procedures that were reviewed and accepted by the FAA as part of a visit to witness post-certification maiden flights.
Law enforcement agencies, universities and public agencies can apply for certificates of authority (COAs) from the FAA to fly in the national airspace. According to ARA, customers who purchase the Nighthawk IV micro-UAS will now have access to the full set of required documentation and procedures necessary for them to receive FAA approval to fly Nighthawks in their designated airspace operating under a COA.
‘This proven technology can improve results and decrease costs in traffic accident investigations, search and rescue, drug smuggling, agricultural assessments, flood damage, bridge inspections and many other civilian applications,’ says Dr. Rob Sues, ARA’s CEO.