Unmanned Aircraft Systems also known as Drones are gaining popularity in education, research, safety operations, commercial purposes and recreation. UAS provides opportunities for a wide range of industries including education, security, emergency response, humanitarian aid and disaster relief, healthcare, weather forecasting, waste management, military defense, energy, telecommunications, maritime, internet, agriculture, air travel, space and many more. Drones offer the advancement of research and innovation in all of these industries.
Due to our close proximity to Melbourne-Orlando International Airport (MLB), flight operations are complex and requires planning and preparation. We must operate drones in a safe manner and must be complaint with FAA rules and regulations.
All personnel, including faculty, staff, and students or third party (contracted vendor) wishing to operate UA (i.e., drones) on Florida Tech property, or as part of the Florida Tech activity must request prior approval and register with the Office of Compliance and Risk Management for compliance and insurance purposes. UA operations are not permitted until approval is granted. Operator must read and comply with the Florida Tech UAS policy. The policy applies to Florida Tech operations both on and off campus. Violating campus policies can result in disciplinary actions.
University-owned drone flights for Florida Tech operations both on and off campus, require approval when submitting the application. Approval will require submission of a flight plan, including date, time and duration of flight, as well as the operational area. Operator must request prior approval from the Office of Risk Management at least two weeks in advance of the proposed use of the UAS by using the UAS (Drone) Use Application.
All members of the University community are personally responsible for complying with FAA regulations, state and federal laws, and university policies.
Per Florida Tech UAS policy, private/hobbyist use on or above university property is prohibited.
*For additional information regarding Commercial Use (Contracted Vendor) responsibilities, please read the Procedure Supplemental Document for UAS
Operator must be in compliance with FAA requirements. UAS are heavily regulated by the FAA. University-owned Drones must be Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) registered. Instructions for seeking FAA approval and safe operation information are available at faa.gov/licenses_certificate/aircraft_certification/aircraft_registry/UA.
FAA Part 107
The set of requirements that must be followed are described in 14 CFR Part 107. In addition, an Advisory Circular AC 107-2 was issued by the FAA to provide guidance information for compliance with Part 107. An abbreviated list of some of the requirements includes the following:
Step 1: Download and fill out UAS Use Application.
Step 2: Assemble necessary documents and information.
Step 3: For Contracted Vendor- Florida Tech’s Contracting Office must have a signed contract with vendor approved through Purchasing prior to drone usage. Signed contract with vendor must include a request for a Certificate of Insurance indicating general liability, aviation liability or equivalent, including UAS coverage of at least $1M, and name Florida Institute of Technology as an additional insured. A General Activities Release must also be signed.A representative of the university must accompany a contracted operator during UAS operations on or above university property.
Step 4: Sign with legal signature as indicated and email all required documents and forms to the Office of Compliance and Risk Management with the subject "UAS request".
Step 5: You will receive an acknowledgement of receipt from the Office of Compliance and Risk Management. Within the two weeks of submission, you will receive an approval or refusal of the request.
Federal Aviation Administration