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Air Carrier Operations

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The vision to revolutionize mobility within metropolitan areas and beyond is one of the new frontiers in modern aviation. Building on the gradual successes of Part 135 applications under the Integration Pilot Program (IPP) is paving the way to unmanned air cargo followed eventually by unmanned passenger transport. An emerging role for the FAA will develop by working with the community to identify and address the key differences between unmanned and manned operations, opportunities and challenges ahead underlying this likely development. The passenger transportation network ecosystem and its associated technologies are likely to be among the most complex aviation. The opportunities to facilitate the full integration of UAS into the National Airspace System (NAS) are significant. The FAA needs to understand this environment, analyze the differences, as well as how they compare to traditional manned air transportation. These analyses along with developing timelines will enhance decision-making, and the research will highlight anticipated needs of the FAA to support further integration of UAS in air transportation operations in and across metropolitan areas including suburbs and exurbs.


Project Lead
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Kurt J. Carraway
UAS Executive Director | Applied Aviation Research Center