UK CAA extends electronic conspicuity rebate scheme for UAS and general aviation

The UK Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) has extended the funding available to encourage the adoption of Electronic Conspicuity (EC) within the UK’s General Aviation (GA) and Unmanned Aircraft Systems (UAS) communities. The CAA is distributing these funds via a rebate scheme launched in October 2020 by the Department for Transport (DfT).

  • The scheme will remain open to applications until 31 March 2024 (or until the funding is used). Those meeting the requirements can claim a 50% rebate of the purchase cost of an EC device to a maximum of £250.00 (including VAT), per applicant. We anticipate up to 3500 rebates will be available from the 9th August 2021. The previously advertised need to purchase equipment by 28 February no longer applies.

In December 2022, the CAA published a joint statement with the Department for Transport (DfT) on the development of a national specification for electronic conspicuity alongside a report commissioned by the DfT from Egis, an independent aviation consultancy .

The CAA has advocated for the development of a clear national specification for electronic conspicuity and supports the recommendations included in the Egis report for aircraft to be equipped with regulated EC devices that meet the proposed specifications. The potential volume and intensity of future air operations in the UK requires a step change in how airspace users safely operate in relation to each other, this EC work is a step towards understanding how that will work and supports the integration of airspace users as described in the Airspace Modernisation Strategy.

The CAA is now focussing on working transparently with manufacturers and the GA community to ensure both specifications and the detail of how, and where, equipment will be mandated can be fully appreciated.

The main equipment able to be used on an aircraft for EC purposes currently available (and that a refund can be claimed against) includes:

  • ADS-B Out capable transponder inclusive of GNSS position source (Mode S ES Enabled).
  • ADS-B Out capable transponder without GNSS position source (Mode S ES)
  • Certified GNSS source for Mode S ES transponders (Including a GNSS position sources in line with the recently published AIC2019Y141, example being Trig TN72)
  • Power FLARM
  • Pilot Aware Rosetta
  • Sky Echo 2.

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