The Director General of Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority (NCAA) Capt. Muhtar Usman has announced that the successful Radio Line of Sight (RLOS) Remotely Piloted Aircraft systems (RPAS) demonstration flight conducted recently in Nigeria within the Finima Control Zone.
The flight, according to Captain Muhtar Usman, covered a flight area of 10 Nautical Miles (NM) and reached an Altitude of about 3,500 feet above ground level.
Usman noted that the RLOS flight demonstration was conducted by Aerial Robotix Limited for a client’s oil pipeline infrastructure.
Captain Usman said ‘’in concert with the Nigerian Airspace Management Agency (NAMA), the NCAA and the operator reviewed the risk assessment associated with the demonstration flight and subsequently issued a Notice to Airmen (NOTAM) to the affected operators and agencies in the operational area.
‘’The demo flight was carried out with a CAMCOPTER S-100 aircraft equipped with Automatic Dependent Surveillance –Broadcast (ADS-B) transponder to make it visible to other airspace users and was observed by NCAA, NAMA, Finima Airstrip Air Traffic Controller (ATC) and the Nigerian Air Force (NAF).
‘’One of the good aspects of the demo operation was its ability to display situational awareness for the RPAS operator. It is instructive to note that the ability to display a situational awareness facilitates the safe operations of RPAS in the airspace.
‘’The success of the exercise is a demonstration of the NCAA’s preparedness towards the integration of RPAS operations into the Nigeria Airspace. The proposed regulations to guide the use of RPAS are in final stages for Publication.’’