Remotely Piloted Aircraft (UAV/drone)

Remotely Piloted Aircraft (UAV/drone)

There are many safety considerations to consider before an individual begins to operate Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAV's), drones or Remotely Piloted Aircraft (RPA) for recreational or commercial purposes.

Recreational use

The Civil Aviation Safety Authority (CASA) has developed rules to ensure they are operated in a manner that does not pose a hazard to aircraft.

• Drones cannot be operated within 5.5km of any controlled airport including Canberra Airport if it weighs more than 250 grams.
• All drones are prohibited from flying in the departure or approach paths of aircraft. Due to high terrain surrounding Canberra Airport this limits drone operation well beyond the 5.5km exclusion zone.
• Heavy fines apply for improper use.

This map clearly outlines the 5.5km exclusion zones and also highlights the no-fly zones as requested by Canberra Airport as operating a drone in these areas would pose a hazard to aircraft departing or arriving from Canberra Airport.

Drone safety apps

There are many drone safety applications available that provide information on RPA, click below to explore.

Commercial use

If you wish to use your drone for commercial use, Canberra Airport is participating in the Automated Airspace Authorisation Trial that allows commercial operators that hold a Remotely Piloted Aircraft Operator's Certificate (ReOC) to apply for approval to operate by using CASA verified drone safety applications as suggested below.

  • Ok2fly
  • Avsoft
  • OpenSky by wing aviation

Detailed information on CASA regulations for RPA commercial use can be found below.

Pilot accreditation and drone registration rules are changing soon. Please visit the CASA website regularly for updated rules.