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Drone Certification

Your Guide To Obtaining FAA Part 107 Certification

HOW DO I RECEIVE DRONE CERTIFICATION?

Obtaining drone certification has actually-gotten extremely easier. On June 21st, 2016, the FAA created a new drone certification process that governs low-risk commercial small unmanned aircraft operations in the United States.  These new regulations were implemented on August 29th 2016 thereby creating Code of Federal Regulations Title 14 Part 107.

So how does one receive their part 107 drone certification?

The most effective way to receive your drone certification is by taking an online study course with TheDroneCoach.com. Upon completion, students can then take and pass the FAA’s Airman Knowledge Test.  Here are step-by-step instructions to receive your part 107 drone certification.

  • Take a part 107 training course.
  • Pass an initial aeronautical knowledge test.
  • Be vetted by the Transportation Security Administration.
  • Obtain a Remote Pilot Part 107 Certificate.
  • Pass a recurrent aeronautical knowledge test every 24 months.
  • Be at least 16 years old.

Additional FAA requirements:

  • Upon request from the FAA or an FAA administrator, a remote pilot must provide their drone for inspection along with all associated documents and records required to be kept.
  • Remote pilots must report accidents to the FAA within 10 days providing the accident results in serious injury or property damage over $500.
  • Remote pilots must conduct a preflight inspection of their drone and remote controller to ensure the drone is safe for operation.

HOW TO PREPARE FOR THE PART 107 AIRMAN KNOWLEDGE TEST

  • Purchase a part 107 study course with The Drone Coach.  The course includes over 20 hours of video course studies, nearly 400 practice questions, and two (2) timed 60-question practice exams.

HOW DO I SCHEDULE AN FAA AERONAUTICAL KNOWLEDGE TEST?

The FAA Aeronautical Knowledge Test is administered at approximately 700 testing facilities throughout the United States, including Alaska and Hawaii.  The exam contains:

  • Multiple-choice questions with 3 answers to choose from.
  • 60 questions total with two (2) hours to take the test.
  • Each question is independent of other questions. A correct response to one does not influence the correct response to another question.
  • Some questions require visual references such as the Aeronautical Sectional Charts or Latitude & Longitude maps.
  • Minimum passing score is 70%.  A student can miss up to 18 questions and still pass the exam.

Here’s a PDF download from the FAA’s website to all testing centers.
https://www.faa.gov/training_testing/testing/media/test_centers.pdf

I HAVE AN FAA SECTION 333 EXEMPTION… NOW WHAT?

WHO MUST OBTAIN PART 107 DRONE CERTIFICATION

If you plan to fly your drone recreationally as a hobbyist, then you do not need to become part 107 certified with the FAA.  However, you must still abide by standard safety guidelines as regulated by the Federal Aviation Association (FAA).  For example, if you are a real estate agent and own your own drone, and your client (home seller) asks you to photograph aerial images of their home for listing purposes, then you as the agent must be part 107 certified.  A few guidelines all remote pilots must follow per FAA rules are:

  • Flying during daylight hours only.
  • Flying under 400 feet AGL (above ground level).
  • Can fly higher than 400 feet AGL if drone is flown within a 400-foot radius of a building, tower, structure.
  • Maintaining direct line-of-sight of your drone.
  • Not permitted to fly in National Parks or National Monuments.
  • Not permitted to fly directly over people unless those people are directly involved in flight operation or are inside a protective covering like an automobile or building.
  • Drones weighing more than .55 lbs. must be registered with the FAA for both recreational and commercial use.

Government entities or organizations such as law enforcement agencies, public universities, state governments, or local municipalities may operate an sUAS under the rules of Title 14 Code of Federal Regulations Part 107 (14 CFR part 107) or, must obtain a blanket public Certificate of Waiver or Authorization (COA) which permits nationwide flights in Class G airspace at or below 400 feet, self-certification of the UAS pilot, and the option to obtain emergency COAs (e-COAs) under special circumstances.

ADDITIONAL FACTS REGARDING PART 107 DRONE CERTIFICATION

  • Pilots who hold a certificate issued under 14 CFR part 61 and have completed a flight review within the previous 24 months, do not need to complete a part 107 training course. You can complete the free online training course “Part 107 small Unmanned Aircraft Systems (sUAS) ALC-451” available on the FAA FAASTeam website.
  • You are not required to pass a medical exam, nor are you required to present a medical certificate.
  • The FAA charges $5.00 to register your sUAS.
    (register here: https://faadronezone.faa.gov/)
  • The FAA requires drone owners to label their sUAS with an FAA registration number.
  • The cost to take the FAA Part 107 Airman Knowledge Test is $150.
  • It takes about 48 hours for your Part 107 certificate to propagate into the FAA online IACRA system.
  • When applying for your Airman Certificate on the IACRA website (https://iacra.faa.gov/IACRA/), but sure to enter all information correctly. Providing inaccurate information is the leading cause for delayed approvals.
  • Temporary Remote Pilot Certificates are issued within 10 business days. Remote pilots may commercially operate their sUAS using the temporary certification.  It takes approximately six to eight weeks for the FAA to mail your actual certificate to you.
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