Two unmanned aerial vehicles have received approval from the Federal Aviation Administration
to perform commercial operations in United States airspace
. The Scan Eagle 200
from Insitu will be launched from a ship and used to monitor icebergs and migrating whales in parts of the Arctic where companies are looking for oil. The PUMA
from Aerovironment will be used by emergency response teams for monitoring oil spills. (Both are referred to as unmanned aircraft systems, or UAS, by the Administration.) "Issuing the type certificates is an important step toward the FAA's goal of integrating UAS into the nation's airspace. These flights will also meet requirements in the FAA Modernization and Reform Act of 2012 that define Arctic operational areas and include a mandate to increase Arctic UAS commercial operations."