The Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA) has given approval to drone maker Throttle Aerospace Systems and hyper delivery platform Dunzo to conduct experimental flights of remotely piloted aircraft or drones.
“Out of 34 expressions of interest applications applied for conducting Beyond Visual Line of Sight (BVLOS) drone experiment, these two firms have been selected,” said a senior DGCA official to Entrackr.
“The approval has been given to conduct safe BVLOS experiment for 100 hours and give the report to DGCA,” added the official.
After the submission of proof of concepts by the firms, the aviation regulator will formulate the BVLOS regulation. Both firms are expected to start conducting experiments by April-end.
The DGCA is conducting experiments for next-generation civil aviation requirement (CAR). At present, DGCA regulations allow only Visual Line of Sight.
In May last year, DGCA had invited applications for conducting BVLOS experiments of remotely piloted aircraft (RPA) in India. Meanwhile, Dunzo confirmed today that they have received approval to conduct the experiment.
Though, Dunzo and Throttle Aerospace had no immediate comments to make on the development. Entrackr will add their response as and when they do.
The move is likely to pave the way for drones being used in air taxis and air deliveries in India. Many observers and experts of the logistics space believe that drones can play an important role in enhancing logistics services in the country.
Earlier, the government legalised the flying of drones or Remotely Piloted Aircraft System in December of 2018. It had also set up an online portal called ‘Digital Sky’ for drone registration.
Besides, the government also drafted a new drone policy for regulations under which it defined five different categories — Nano: less than or equal to 250 grams, Micro: from 250 grams to 2 kg, Small: from 2kg to 25 kg, medium: From 25 kg to 150 kg and Large: greater than 150 kg.
Nano drones that weigh less than 250 grams will not require registration.