Verizon’s Skyward and UPS Flight Forward have announced they will be working together to bring drone delivery to The Villages in Florida. The drones will use Verzion’s 4G and 5G networks, running on Skywards’ drone management platform.
Minnesota energy provider Great River Energy has turned to Verizon’s Skyward to help scale its drone program. The company now has 11 certified drone pilots and a fleet of 13 aircraft used to cut down costs and improve workplace safety.
The FAA has granted Verizon Skyward a temporary waiver that allows its pilots to inspect critical communications infrastructure near the Big Hollow wildfire in Washington from home using network-connected drones. The pilots are allowed to operate 24 hours a day with less than three miles of visibility and no person onsite to monitor the operation.
Skyward introduces a brand new feature, called Flight Insights. This provides UAS Managers with an overview of all their organization’s flight operations. A feature that is especially useful for companies with large fleets of drones.
Last week during InterDrone, Dan Elwell, the Acting Administrator of the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) had stated that the Low Altitude Authorization and Notification Capability or LAANC roll-out would be completed before the end of the month. Well, it seems that the FAA is ahead of schedule. As of today the Central North States have been activated. This is the last region to come on board. LAANC is now available for commercial drone operators nationwide. Allowing pilots to get near real-time approval for their flight plans. In the past, the approval or waiver process used to take weeks if not months. The availability of LAANC throughout the country represents a huge milestone in the development of commercial drone applications.
Starting today, Part 107 drone operators, or commercial drone pilots, can use the Skyward Low Altitude Airspace Notification Capability (LAANC) cloud solution to request automated FAA approval to fly their drones in controlled airspace.
About two weeks ago we reported on Skyward (owned by Verizon) being the first FAA-approved vendor to begin administering the automated Low Altitude Authorization and Notification Capability (LAANC) approval process. Now, the Federal Aviation Agency (FAA) has approved to be the first company to actually use the Low Altitude Authorization Capability (LAANC) for automatic access to operate a drone in regulated airspace over controlled airports.
Skyward has been approved as a LAANC provider, an automated, fast-track approval process to allow commercial drone pilots to gain instant access to controlled airspace. This is a huge step forward as it reduces wait times for commercial drone operators to mere seconds whereas the traditional approval process could take months.
Skyward, which is owned by Verizon, is the first FAA-approved vendor to begin administering the automated Low Altitude Authorization and Notification Capability (LAANC) approval process. They have announced that the system will go live this fall at the following four airports: Cincinnati International Airport (CVG), Reno (RNO), San Jose (SJC), and Lincoln (LNK). The FAA plans to include 49 airports in the program by the end of next year.