Brazil’s aviation regulator “approves first commercial BVLOS flights”

Santiago & Cintra reports it has become the first company in Brazil to receive authorizations for beyond visual line of sight (BVLOS) drone flights from the National Civil Aviation Agency (ANAC).

There are now three categories of operation with unmanned aircraft for civilian use in Brazil: VLOS, EVLOS, and BVLOS, in compliance with the Brazilian Civil Special Regulation RBAC-A which permits the use of drones for civil applications in the country.

The latest certification complies with RBAC-E94 definitions and applies to the eBee series fixed wing drones developed by senseFly, and marketed in Brazil by Santiago & Cintra. It applies to the eBee Classic, eBee Plus and eBee SQ which become the first drones authorised to carry out flights up to 400 feet (121 meters) in height and a 5km radius from a licensed pilot or observer. SenseFly systems are also approved for BVLOS operations in Canada, China, Denmark, France, Spain and Switzerland. To conduct BVLOS operations, it is necessary to:

(a) present relevant information and alerts on the condition of the aircraft to the remote pilot;

(b) have a navigation system with sufficient performance and reliability to ensure the safety of the operation;

(c) be capable of recovering from emergencies; and

(d) have an adequate aircraft lighting system.

According to Santiago & Cintra: “The drones for commercial use, corporate or experimental, are divided into three classes according to their maximum weight for takeoff. Understand better about each one:

  • Class 1 – Over 150kg – According to ANAC regulations for this category, certification is similar to that for manned aircraft. In this category drones need to be registered in the Brazilian Aeronautical Registry.
  • Class 2 – Over 25kg and less than or equal to 150kg -The regulation provides technical requirements that must be observed by the manufacturer and regulated in the Brazilian Aeronautical Registry.
  • Class 3 – Less than or equal to 25kg – The standard for Class 3 RPA requires drones to fly past the visual line (BVLOS) or above 400 feet (121m), duly authorized by ANAC.

Drones with up to 250g do not need to be registered, regardless of purpose.

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