Drone airspace management: event update and request for information

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As a result of the ongoing impacts of travel restrictions, public health concerns of large gatherings and uncertainty in the short to medium term caused by COVID-19, ICAO has made the difficult decision to postpone the Fourth DRONE ENABLE Symposium, which was originally scheduled for 9 to 11 September 2020 in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. The symposium, renamed DRONE ENABLE 2021, will now be held from 13 to 15 April 2021, with the location remaining Rio de Janeiro.

Recognizing that an agreed global approach remains crucial to assisting businesses and others in launching their UAS or UTM services without negatively impacting the safety of manned aviation operations, or the safety of persons and property on the ground, ICAO remains committed to exploring these issues in depth at its DRONE ENABLE events.

A key process informing DRONE ENABLE discussions is the issuance by ICAO of the Requests for Information (RFIs).

The current COVID-19 situation may have negatively impacted the ability of States, organizations and individuals to adequately respond to this year’s RFI, ICAO has extended the submission deadline to 25 September 2020. Those who have already submitted responses are welcome to update their original submission and those that were unable to meet the original timeline are invited to provide a submission. The main topic areas being targeted this year remain:

  • Unmanned aircraft (UA) performance requirements in a UTM environment
  • UTM system certification
  • UTM integration into airport environments and activities

All RFI responses, whether original, updated or new submissions, will be evaluated by a group of international experts, and those providing the best submissions will be invited to present at DRONE ENABLE 2021 in Rio de Janeiro.