This specification establishes the airworthiness requirements for the design of fixed-wing unmanned aircraft systems. It defines the baseline design, construction, and verification requirements for an unmanned aircraft system (UAS), defined as a system composed of the unmanned aircraft and all required on-board subsystems, payload, control station, other required off-board subsystems, any required launch and recovery equipment, all required crew members, and command and control (C2) links between UA and the control station. This specification applies to fixed wing UAS with permission to operate over a defined area and in airspace authorized by a nation's civil aviation authority (CAA) with a fully interactive ground-based person as ”Remote Pilot in Command.”
This specification covers requirements for flight (e.g., proof of compliance, load distribution limits, propeller speed and pitch limits); performance (stalling speed, takeoff, climb, landing, multi-engine); design (equipment, systems, and installation, workmanship, airframe, airspeed limitations, loads and dynamics); construction (fabrication methods, fasteners); structure (loads, flight loads, limit load factors, design airspeeds); command and control system (flight and navigations instruments, automatic flight control system, datalinks, teleoperated flight controls); other required off-board subsystems (required launch and recovery equipment, tethering systems); miscellaneous equipment (payloads, digital flight data recording system); operating limitations and information (weight and center of gravity, propulsion system limitations, electromagnetic environmental effects); documentation (design control, aircraft flight manual, maintenance manual); verification (system verification, methods of verification); and best practices (performance verification, airframe, propulsion system, propeller, miscellaneous equipment such as payloads and high-intensity radiated fields [HIRF] protection).
1.1 This specification covers the airworthiness requirements for the design of light unmanned aircraft systems. This specification defines the baseline design, construction, and verification requirements for an unmanned aircraft system (UAS).
1.2 As a minimum, a UAS is defined as a system composed of the unmanned aircraft and all required on-board subsystems, payload, control station, other required off-board subsystems, any required launch and recovery equipment, all required crew members, and command and control (C2) links between UA and the control station.
1.3 The intent is for this standard of practice for CAA, self- or third-party determinations of airworthiness for UAS. This specification provides the core requirements for airworthiness certification of lightweight (UAS) (not necessarily limited to UAs under 55 lb GTOW) or for certain CAA operational approvals using risk-based categories. Additional requirements are envisioned to address the requirements for expanded operations and characteristics not addressed by this specification.
1.4 This specification is intended to support UAS operations. It is assumed that the risk of UAS will vary based on concept of operations, environment, and other variables. The fact that there are no human beings onboard the UAS may reduce or eliminate some hazards and risks. However, at the discretion of the CAA, this specification may be applied to other UAS operations.
1.5 The values in Imperial units are to be regarded as the standard. The values in SI are for information only.
1.6 This standard does not purport to address all of the safety concerns, if any, associated with its use. It is the responsibility of the user of this standard to establish appropriate safety, health, and environmental practices and determine the applicability of regulatory limitations prior to use.
1.7 This international standard was developed in accordance with internationally recognized principles on standardization established in the Decision on Principles for the Development of International Standards, Guides and Recommendations issued by the World Trade Organization Technical Barriers to Trade (TBT) Committee.