[Breaking News] FAA Opens Online Commercial sUAS Registration by Alan Perlman on March 31, 2016 It’s been a big week for the commercial sUAS industry here in the United States. On Tuesday, the FAA doubled the “blanket” COA altitude from 200 feet to 400 feet, and just this morning, they’re now bringing the commercial aircraft registration process online. Why is this a big deal? Because up until today, sUAS pilots would use the FAA’s legacy Form 8050-1 registration process out of Oklahoma City, OK. They’d have to fill out a paper form, mail it in, and wait a few weeks to hear back. That paper process still exists, but only if you’re required to do so under the following guidelines: Your Aircraft weighs more than 55 lbs You intend to operate your aircraft outside of the United States Your aircraft is owned by a trustee The aircraft owner uses a voting trust to meet U.S. Citizenship requirements You are required by a Section 333 Exemption or a certificate of waiver or authorization Meaning, for the vast majority of commercial sUAS pilots going through or planning to go through the Section 333 Exemption process, it’s now MUCH easier to register your aircraft. Wahoo! Note: Those owners who already have registered in the legacy system do not have to re-register in the new system. This is a huge step forward for the sUAS industry. Congratulations to the FAA for continuing to improve the regulatory environment. I look forward to more updates over the next few months. I went ahead and included the full press release below, which you can also read here.