FAA Approves New sUAV Flight Rules and it’s GREAT news for drone pilots!

As of March 29, 2016.

“After a comprehensive risk analysis, the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) has raised the unmanned aircraft (UAS) “blanket” altitude authorization for Section 333 exemption holders and government aircraft operators to 400 feet. Previously, the agency had put in place a nationwide Certificate of Waiver or Authorization (COA) for such flights up to 200 feet.
The new COA policy allows small unmanned aircraft—operated as other than model aircraft (i.e. commercial use)—to fly up to 400 feet anywhere in the country except restricted airspace and other areas, such as major cities, where the agency prohibits UAS operations.

“This is another milestone in our effort to change the traditional speed of government,” said FAA Administrator Michael Huerta. “Expanding the authorized airspace for these operations means government and industry can carry out unmanned aircraft missions more quickly and with less red tape.”
The FAA expects the move will reduce the workload for COA applications for industry UAS operators, government agencies and the FAA’s Air Traffic Organization. The agency also estimates the move will lessen the need for individual COAs by 30 to 40 percent. Other provisions of an FAA authorization, such as registering the UAS and making sure pilots have the proper certification, still apply.

Under the blanket COA, the FAA will permit flights at or below 400 feet for UAS operators with a Section 333 exemption for aircraft weighing less than 55 pounds and for government UAS operations. Operators must fly under daytime Visual Flight Rules, keep the UAS within visual line of sight of the pilot and stay certain distances away from airports or heliports:
Five nautical miles (NM) from an airport having an operational control tower; or
Three NM from an airport with a published instrument flight procedure, but not an operational tower; or
Two NM from an airport without a published instrument flight procedure or an operational tower; or
Two NM from a heliport with a published instrument flight procedure.”


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Press Release: FAA Approves 1,120 Drones (sUAV) for Gowdy Brothers Aerospace

FAA 333 Exemption


SHAKOPEE, Minn., March 7, 2016 /PRNewswire/ — FAA Airman and Airspace Rules Division (Federal Aviation Administration) announced today that the 20 of Gowdy Brothers Aerospace’s ( customers were the first ever to receive 1,120 Drones/sUAV (small Unmanned Aerial Vehicles) on their Section 333 Exemption petition grants.

The FAA requires all individuals and companies desiring to fly a drone/sUAV for commercial purposes to petition the FAA and receive a Section 333 Exemption grant.








This is the largest grant of drones on an exemption since Measure, a 32 Advisors Company, LLC, was awarded 324 drones on August 28, 2015 under FAA Sect 333 exemption #12646.

“Virtually every Drone or sUAV ever manufactured under 55 pounds is on the Gowdy Brothers approved lists of 1,120 Drones.” According to Jason Christenson, President of Gowdy Brothers Aerospace, LLC.

“This new process of adding 1,120 approved small Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (sUAV) to Gowdy Brothers Aerospace’s customers petitions will expedite the commercial UAV operators approval process and meet both the FAA, Airman and Airspace Rules Division’s objectives and Congress’ Modernization and Reform act of 2012, to safely integrate UAS/UAV’s into the National Airspace System (NAS),”according to an Washington, DC, FAA Airman and Airspace Rules Division source.

As of March 7, 2016, the FAA has been working to review and approve 3,799 Section 333 petitions to fly drones/sUAVs commercially from the 13,712 submissions within the past 12 months.

About Gowdy Brothers Aerospace

Gowdy Brothers Aerospace, LLC ( is the nation’s leader in providing consulting services and assistance to organizations, companies and individuals who are seeking to petition for an exemption to fly Unmanned Aircraft Systems (UAS) commercially under Section 333 of the Modernization and Reform Act of 2012.  Gowdy Brothers Aerospace leads the field in FAA section 333 petition filings. Gowdy Brothers assist with COA (certificate of authorization/wavier), LOA (letters of authorization) to air traffic control, traditional N-number aircraft registration and amendments to add 1,120 drones and additional purposes such as motion picture, television, closed set filming and search and rescue operations to existing exemptions.

Gowdy Brothers Aerospace, LLC History:

Gowdy Brothers Aerospace, LLC has carved a unique sector of business in one of the fastest growing industries in the world, as an independent consultant for hundreds and hundreds of companies and individuals wishing to petition the FAA for an exemption to fly sUAV (small Unmanned Aerial Vehicles) commercially under Section 333 of the FAA Modernization and Reform Act of 2012.

Gowdy Brothers Aerospace, LLC was founded in April of 2015.  “Our team has a wide variety of backgrounds and experiences to offer.  We are not lawyers – we are licensed pilots, businessmen and experienced enthusiasts that can bring practical experience, knowledge and compliance to individuals and companies who wish to capitalize on the massive growth in the drone industry,” commented by Jason Christenson, President, Gowdy Brothers Aerospace.

“We are relieved that the FAA released its Notice of Proposed Rules for sUAV in 2015, but until the proposed rule, or any other proposed legislation becomes a final, to fly commercially and legally a Section 333 exemption grant is still required,” according toZack Gowdy, UAV Specialist, Gowdy Brothers Aerospace.

“As a 333 Exemption holder ourselves, and helping a little short of a thousand customers from virtually every state and multiple foreign countries, Gowdy Brothers Aerospace, with the massive amount of submissions we have filed, has become intimately familiar with the nuances of filing and receiving an approved FAA 333 Petition grant,” says Stephen Gowdy, Chief Pilot, Gowdy Brothers Aerospace.

Contact Information

Andrew Brandt
Client Traffic Controller
Tel: 763-463-5885

Gowdy Brothers Aerospace, LLC
8170 Old Carriage Court N., Suite #200
Shakopee, MN 55379

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SOURCE Gowdy Brothers Aerospace, LLC

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