Drones Permission in Aviation

Drone in India

The Indian government envisions transforming the country into a global Drone Hub by the year 2030, with plans to extend the application of drones across diverse sectors such as health, defense, and infrastructure. Initiatives, including waivers for pilot permits, streamlined procedures, the establishment of new drone corridors, and incentives for local manufacturers, are poised to significantly accelerate the growth of the drone industry in India in the coming years.

Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAVs), commonly known as drones, have become integral tools for various nations, addressing challenges like disease control, environmental conservation, and innovative delivery services. Drones offer remote accessibility and enhance safety measures, leading to a consistent rise in their utilization across different sectors.

India, with its ongoing advancements in technology, including electric vehicles, digitization, and artificial intelligence, is progressively recognizing the versatile applications of drones. Initially employed in defense, photography, and videography, drones are now playing crucial roles in food delivery, surveillance, geographical mapping, disaster management, search and rescue operations, agriculture and more. The evolving landscape of drone technology is contributing to the country's technological trajectory and expanding its footprint across diverse industries.

Drone Registration Process in India:

The Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA) has introduced a digital platform for the registration of drones in India, marking a significant step towards utilizing drones for various commercial purposes. In conjunction with this, laws and policies have been formulated to create a framework for responsible drone usage. The regulations for Unmanned Aircraft (UA) were updated by the Government of India in 2019 to prevent unauthorized flights and establish a standardized approach for UAs.

The "no permission, no takeoff" (NPNT) rule, implemented by the Government of India, is designed to manage UAs through the Unmanned Traffic Management (UTM) system, as per Civil Aviation Requirements (CAR). These regulations cover the registration of UAs, submission of flight plans, obtaining permissions, and certification to ensure operators are adequately trained.

Various Categories of Drones:

The Ministry of Civil Aviation has categorized drones based on their weight, considering the diverse sizes and designs. The classifications are as follows:

Nano Drones: Equal to or less than 250 grams

Micro Drones: More than 250 grams but equal to or less than 2 kg

Small Drones: More than 2 kg - 25 kg

Medium Drones: More than 25 kg up to 150 kg

Large Drones: Weighing more than 150 kg

Registration Procedure: Every drone or UA is required to be registered via the Digital Sky Platform, and, in return, a Unique Identification Number (UIN) and Unmanned Aircraft Operator Permit (UAOP) license will be issued. To become a licensed drone pilot, one must undergo proper training and obtain the necessary permissions.

Registration Steps:
Digital Sky Platform: DGCA's online platform streamlines the registration and documentation process.

User Registration:
Click on the provided link for Nano drones or UAs weighing 250 grams.
Select the category for remote pilot/operator or manufacturer.
Register by clicking on the required sub-category.
Fill in the mandatory fields with appropriate information and click on Sign Up.
Upon successful registration, a notification will be sent to the registered email ID.
Click on the link in the email to view drone profiles and make selections.
Fill in the required information and submit.

UIN License for Drones:
For drones weighing above 250 grams, users need to be registered on the Digital Sky Platform. The UIN registration procedure involves selecting options based on whether the drone is locally manufactured or imported. Users must fill in detailed information about the drone, and fees for UIN registration, UAOP license, and renewal are applicable.

Training Process:
Proper training is mandated by the DGCA for anyone operating a drone. DGCA-certified aviation schools provide both theoretical and technical knowledge, covering subjects like Radio Telephony, Flight Planning, Aviation Meteorology, Knowledge of Aerodynamics, and Air Navigation. Eligibility criteria include age, educational qualifications, completion of DGCA-certified training, and security clearance from the Ministry of Home Affairs.

DGCA Certified Institutions:
Institutions certified by DGCA play a crucial role in training individuals for Remote Pilot License (RPL). Eligible members for RPL include those holding a Private Pilot License (PPL), individuals interested in drone technology, those needing UAV piloting skills, military personnel, and professionals for commercial uses.

No Permission, No Takeoff (NPNT):
The NPNT app facilitates communication with the Ministry for operational purposes. It monitors and grants permissions based on real-time circumstances, ensuring compliance with commercial requirements, such as timely product delivery, rescue missions, and other activities requiring drone usage.

Drone Registration Procedure:

The drone registration process involves obtaining the OEM Certificate from the manufacturer, registering on the Digital Sky Platform, obtaining the UIN, marking the UIN on the UA, applying for the UAOP License, and obtaining the Remote Pilot License (RPL) after completing DGCA-approved training. The NPNT app is installed for every flight, requesting permissions and ensuring authorized takeoffs.

This one-time registration of drones, pilots, and owners, along with the use of the NPNT app, helps distinguish between authorized and unauthorized flights, contributing to public safety and security.

Please note:
The information provided here is for reference purposes. For the latest and most accurate details, users are encouraged to visit the official DGCA website.