The University of Maryland (UMD) Unmanned Aircraft Systems (UAS) Test Site, located in California, Md. , has received a Certificate of Waiver or Authorization (COA) from the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) to fly the Talon 240, designed and manufactured by UAV Solutions, Inc. of Jessup, Md. This authorization resulted from the first use of UMD’s airworthiness process, the only known university airworthiness process that is modeled after the U.S. Navy’s rigorous standards for ensuring the safety and reliability of its manned and unmanned aircraft.
“This flight authorization is significant because it builds on the existing relationship between the University of Maryland and the Navy, and applies our mutually disciplined research approaches to the cutting edge of civil and commercial unmanned aviation,” said Dr. Darryll Pines , Farvardin Professor and Dean of the UMD A. James Clark School of Engineering.
With a 20-foot wingspan, the Talon 240 can fly for up to three and a half hours. The Talon was designed for use by military and universities needing a proven platform to conduct operations and research.
Maryland Delegate John Bohanan (D-29B) highlighted what the COA means for Maryland. “This FAA stamp of approval is the federal government’s recognition of our airspace integration efforts, which are part of our region’s autonomous research initiative – a key to our economic growth and diversification.”