Military Embedded Systems

Autonomous aircraft certification plan formally accepted by the FAA


July 20, 2023

Lisa Daigle

Assistant Managing Editor

Military Embedded Systems

Reliable Robotics image

MOUNTAIN VIEW, Calif. Aircraft automation company Reliable Robotics reports that its safety-enhancing aircraft automation certification plan has been formally accepted by the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), a milestone the company says is the farthest a company has progressed toward certification of fully automated aircraft.

The company describes the Reliable Robotics autonomous flight system as enabling continuous autopilot engagement through all phases of aircraft operation including taxi, takeoff, and landing. High-integrity navigation systems like the one under acceptance by the FAA make it possible to safely fly in lower-visibility weather conditions without costly ground infrastructure. Additionally, a continuous autopilot mode enables aircraft to be remotely piloted with continuous engagement from departure gate to arrival gate.

The company's announcement of the FAA certification says that it leverages existing regulations for normal and transport category aircraft and avoids the need for special conditions or exemptions. 

The U.S. Air Force and NASA both recently demonstrated the company's autonomous aircraft system as the governmental bodies seek to mature and adopt key technologies that will prevent common causes of aviation accidents and improve operational efficiency.

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