News WDPO

Recommendations for creating European National Standard Scenarios

The EU scenarios STS-01 and STS-02 may significantly limit the possibility of performing operations with drones weighing over 4 kg, which will be used in the city. Particularly burdensome and impossible to meet in urban conditions is the provision obliging the operator of the unmanned system to obtain the consent of every person on the controlled ground area. Recall that the controlled ground area covers the projection of both the operating space and the safety buffer onto the surface. This means that everyone in the space where the drone is operating must consent to participate in the operation.

The above means that the operators of drones weighing more than 4 kg carrying out operations in the city must apply for individual consent of the national supervision to perform a given operation. An alternative is to introduce a national scenario for a certein type of operation. Multitude of factors that define a given type of operation couses dificulieties during describing individual scenario for particular type of operation. Therefore, WDPO proposes to organize the flight authorization process by introducing a coordinated system of creating national scenarios.

As a result of the Working Group work, it is proposed to define a single mission with scenarios consisting of 3 modules. Scenarios are treated as a set of procedures and requirements that the operator, pilot and equipment must meet in order to perform a specific flight. This will give operators a wide range of opportunities to perform various missions without the need to apply to the Civil Aviation Authorities for individual consent (it is enough to submit a flight in accordance with the national scenario). This gives training organizers the ability to create standardized training programs for specific operations. Employers will be sure that the operator selected for a specific task meets the specific requirements of this operation.

Mission = Basic Requirements + Mission Type Requirements + Additional Requirements

WDPO proposes to create scenarios consisting of the following modules:

  • Basic requirements: VLOS flight, BVLOS flight,
  • Requirements related to the type of mission (applies to the type of mission planned): smog, photogrammetry, inspection, SAR, other
  • Additional requirements (any additional restrictions and procedures related to the planned mission): flight in category C airspace; aircraft category and mass limitations, flight training, night flights, others

When planning the mission, the operator will declare the flight in accordance with the scenario composed of selected basic, functional and additional requirements. Below is a suggestion of sets for each requirement

Basic requirements

Requirements related to the type of mission

Additional requirements

V  

Lot wg VLOS

1

Sampling the smoke from the chimneys using a drone

 

Training

Training flights

B

Lot wg BVLOS

2

Large-scale search and reconnaissance missions

 

ATC

The flight is performed in controlled airspace

 

 

3

Loty fotogrametryczne realizowane na wysokościach wyższych niż 120m

 

Swarm

Lot wykonywany rojem dronów gdzie jeden pilot nadzoruje lot więcej niż jednego drona jednocześnie

 

 

4

Photogrammetric flights performed at altitudes higher than 120m

 

A25

Unmanned plane flight with a take-off weight not exceeding 25 kg

 

 

5

Critical infrastructure inspection

A150

Unmanned plane flight with a take-off weight not exceeding 150 kg

 

 

 

 

MR25

Unmanned multirotor flight with a take-off weight not exceeding 25 kg

 

 

 

 

MR150

Unmanned multirotor flight with a take-off weight not exceeding 25 kg

 

 

 

 

Inne

Other requirements

 

For each of the scenario modules, the requirements for the pilot, operator and equipment should be developed (based on a risk analysis). Flight procedures must also be presented.

Requirements for the pilot may be related to his competences, current flight time, and policies. Competency requirements define the required training according to model training programs. Among the competences necessary to perform specialized drone missions, one should distinguish those universal, which are necessary to pilot a drone in VLOS and BVLOS conditions, and on this basis, develop a model training program for the basic requirements. Then, on the basis of a risk analysis, an additional training program should be developed to acquire skills related to the implementation of a specific mission in accordance with the functional element for specific parameters of the additional missions.

Example 1 - a pilot performs photogrammetric VLOS operations  at an altitude of not more than 120 m in an unmanned aircraft weighing up to 25 kg. According to the above assumption, the pilot should have general knowledge of the rules of VLOS flights and training in the operation of an unmanned aircraft weighing up to 25 kg. If the same pilot decides to operate with unmanned aerial vehicles weighing up to 150 kg, he should only undergo training in the use of heavier aircraft.

Example 2 - a pilot has training in the field of inspection with drones weighing up to 25 kg in VLOS conditions and intends to start operations to collect smoke samples from the chimneys. It should be directed to training only in the scope of collecting smoke samples from chimneys. The above will be possible only if the scenarios are built on a modular basis.

The requirements for the operator should define the amount of the guarantee sum that the operator must have in order to perform the given operations, the requirements related to the operational manual, requirements related to ensuring the maintenance of the equipment in good technical condition and supervision over the maintenance of appropriate competences of the staff.

Equipment requirements may dictate the conditions for completing individual missions. For example, an omnidirectional flash will be required for night flights or out of sight flights. For transport flights, propeller guards and a rescue parachute will be required. An alternative GPS system will be required for BVLOS flights.

SUBSTANTIATION:

The lack of modularity of the scenarios will make it difficult to create national scenarios and the training process because it will be necessary to develop a different scenario and training program for each variant of the mission implementation for VLOS and BVLOS. In addition, the VLOS scenario assuming a "certain number" of hours of practical training (as it is written in the EU VLOS and BVLOS scenario) does not guarantee the acquisition of very precise flying skills to perform high-risk missions such as power grid inspection or smoke sampling from the chimney. In addition, the special category cannot be limited to the two standard scenarios VLOS and BVLOS. A student who completes the basic training in VLOS up to 5 kg will have only basic drone piloting skills. However, these skills are insufficient to carry out high-risk missions such as: automatic flights, photogrammetric flights at an altitude of over 120 meters, inspection of power networks, smoke sampling from chimneys, exploration and reconnaissance flights in large areas. This can be compared to trying to start in ski jumping after completing basic training in maintaining balance on skis and performing basic maneuvers.

WDPO recommends creating scenarios in a modular manner, taking into account the levels of requirements for individual types of missions. The above recommendations were developed by a working group consisting of 30 operators and training entities.

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