The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) has authorized Phoenix Air Unmanned to operate a Swiss-made drone weighing up to 191.8 pounds beyond visual line of sight (BVLOS) for certain types of aerial works. This is the first time a drone of this size has received an exemption for commercial BVLOS operations by the FAA.

The FAA is allowing Phoenix Air Unmanned to operate SwissDrones SVO 50 V2 aircraft for aerial photography, survey, and powerline and pipeline patrol and inspection purposes. According to the terms set by the FAA, all flights must occur:

  • In Class G airspace;
  • In sparsely populated areas;
  • Over pre-planned flight paths designed to avoid any known obstacles;
  • Over linear infrastructure with right-of-way, except for takeoff and landing; and
  • Within 100 feet above and 20 feet right or left of the centerline of the infrastructure that is being inspected.

SwissDrones SVO 50 V2 leverages the construction principle of intermeshing…