The Association for Unmanned Vehicle Systems International (AUVSI) Remote Pilots Council (RPC) recently met in Las Vegas. The council discussed initiatives to promote safety and performance in the unmanned aircraft systems (UAS) industry.

“As more commercial UAS pilots and operators are trained and certified, they will join the aviation community’s longstanding culture and commitment to safety and performance,” says Brian Wynne, AUVSI president and CEO. “AUVSI is dedicated to working with other stakeholders to ensure there are unified and harmonized standards and regulations for the safe and efficient integration of UAS throughout the global airspace.”

At the meeting, co-hosted by the AUVSI Nevada Chapter and coinciding with the InterDrone conference and exhibition, Wynne said the initiatives will support the integral role of skilled and responsible operators in the advancement of UAS.
AUVSI announced five initiatives:

  • Safety awards program: These awards will recognize operators and organizations that demonstrate outstanding contributions of airmanship, safety and operational excellence to the UAS industry. The first awards will be presented at AUVSI Xponential 2018 in Denver.
  • Increased advocacy: The RPC will increase its visibility to proactively address challenges within the regulatory process and provide solutions by collaborating and supporting innovation, technology and risk management. The RPC will harness the talents and resources of its members in the UAS industry to provide clear and unified goals.
  • Partner-approved AUVSI accredited certification program: AUVSI is collaborating with leading standards and certification providers to establish unified standards for commercial UAS. The standards will provide benchmarks for training, operations and safety management, and allow operators to demonstrate their level of performance to customers and the public.
  • Safety credit program: AUVSI will develop a credit program to support the emerging safety culture in the UAS community. Safety credits will be awarded to organizations that sponsor or participate in educational webinars, seminars and conferences, training (other than qualification training), and audits approved by accredited service providers and regulators.
  • Collaborative information portal: AUVSI will provide an interactive tool as a service to its members for sharing knowledge, experience, and observations to conduct safe and responsible UAS operations. 

The RPC, which AUVSI started earlier this year in collaboration with its local chapters and the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), is a forum for remote pilots to engage directly with one another and the FAA. Among the RPC’s goals are to provide feedback on real-world UAS operations, better understand the FAA waiver process and offer suggestions for increasing its efficiency, discuss operational challenges and potential solutions from within the UAS community and prioritize needs for additional regulation.


The Association for Unmanned Vehicle Systems International (AUVSI) — a nonprofit organization dedicated to the advancement of unmanned systems and robotics — represents more than 7,500 members from more than 60 countries involved in the fields of government, industry and academia. AUVSI members work in the defense, civil and commercial markets.