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FAA to Test and Evaluate Unmanned Aircraft Detection & Mitigation Equipment

The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) announced that it plans to evaluate technologies and systems that could detect and mitigate potential safety risks posed by unmanned aircraft. The effort will be part of the agency’s Airport Unmanned Aircraft Systems Detection and Mitigation Research Program.

The FAA plans to test and evaluate at least 10 technologies or systems. The evaluations are expected to begin later this year and will initially occur at the FAA’s William J. Hughes Technical Center, located adjacent to the Atlantic City International Airport in New Jersey.

After the initial testing and evaluation in New Jersey, the agency expects to expand the effort to four additional U.S. airports. Those selections will be made at a later date.

Interested manufacturers, vendors, and integrators of drone detection and/or mitigation technologies/systems will have 45 days to respond to the FAA’s announcement.

FAA Reauthorization Act of 2018 requires the agency to ensure that technologies used to detect or mitigate potential risks posed by unmanned aircraft do not interfere with safe airport operations.

The FAA expects to issue another solicitation in the coming weeks for airport operators interested in hosting the additional research and testing.