Print Version | Newsletter Home | NAAA Home
National Agricultural Aviation Association eNewsletter
Voice of the Aerial Application Industry
December 8, 2022
Important Call for GPS Data to Protect Manned Ag Aircraft from Drones
More GPS flight log data is needed to continue this study. Because of the diverse growing areas and unique geographical challenges experienced by aerial applicators, it is imperative that as many states and regions as possible are represented.

Earlier this year, an FAA advisory committee weighted with drone interests from Amazon, Google and other unmanned corporate interests suggested that the agency promulgate rules that drones operating beyond visual line of sight be permitted to:

  • Increase their weight to 1,320 pounds
  • Not equip with ADS-B identification technology
  • Not give the right of way to manned aircraft when operating in rural, low-altitude airspace because they claimed there are no other users of this airspace.
As an ag aviator, you know these requests to be patently unsafe and based on false premises. As such, we call on you to help us collect information on ag aircraft’s use of the low-altitude airspace. NAAA is working with and supports Mississippi State University’s (MSU) Raspet Flight Research Laboratory and its continuing research on safe operational distances between low-altitude, manned aircraft and drones. The study’s objectives are to:
  1. Identify Ag Aircraft Operational Trends
  2. Develop Ag Aircraft Operational Model
  3. Validate Model through Observation/Collection of Empirical Data
  4. Inform/Educate UAS Operators
  5. Promote Safety in all Low-Altitude Ag Environments
Your voluntary participation in this study is critical to achieving these objectives. NAAA encourages you to donate your GPS flight log data to participate in this timely research. Logs from any year(s) are welcome and will be washed of any identifying information prior to use.
Many of you have previously contributed during the first stage of data collection from 2017 to 2020 when NAAA members donated 49,180 flight logs from 20 states. The second stage of the study began in 2021 and seeks to additionally include aircraft make and model info. These details are important, as the airspace modeling will be impacted by aircraft types differently, such as fixed-wing versus helicopter operations.

More GPS flight log data is needed to continue this study. Because of the diverse growing areas and unique geographical challenges experienced by aerial applicators, it is imperative that as many states and regions as possible are represented. This will ultimately help facilitate the safe integration of unmanned aircraft into these different airspaces.

As a reminder, NAAA and Raspet have agreed that all submitted information will remain confidential, and all GPS flight logs will be stripped of any personally identifying information before any research is conducted using the data.

There are several methods available to submit your data:
  1. Request a secure upload link for larger uploads OR email directly to Madison Dixon, Research Director.
  2. Mail a flash drive or other storage device to the address below. (The device will be immediately mailed back once data is received if a return address is provided):


Attn: Madison Dixon

Raspet Flight Research Lab – Bldg. 2

114 Airport Rd.

Starkville, MS 39759

<< Previous Article Next Article >>
Share this article:  LinkedIn Twitter Facebook
Add a CommentAdd a Comment
View CommentsView Comments ()
This newsletter is intended for NAAA members only. NAAA requests that should any party desire to publish, distribute or quote any part of this newsletter that they first seek the permission of the Association. The views, thoughts, and opinions expressed herein do not necessarily represent those of the National Agricultural Aviation Association (NAAA), its Board of Directors, staff or membership. Items in this newsletter are not the result of paid advertising and are only meant to highlight newsworthy developments. No endorsement by NAAA is intended or implied.
2022 Ag Aviation Expo Halftime Report
Take the Covington Challenge! Covington Aircraft Pledges to Match Donations to NAAREF Made by Dec. 31
Important Call for GPS Data to Protect Manned Ag Aircraft from Drones
In Case You Missed It!
NAAA Follows Up Its Deep Aviation Safety Concerns with the FAA Drone BVLOS ARC by Entreating DOT Secretary Buttigieg to Not Compromise Low-Altitude Ag Pilots’ Lives
Downstown Aero Crop Service Co-Founder Dick Nixholm Passes Away at 95
NAAA Urges the FAA to Prioritize Safety, Suspend BVLOS Waiver Approvals
EPA Approves Revised Pesticide Applicator Certification Plans for 13 State and Federal Agencies
2022 Ag Aviation Expo App Available for Download
FAA Proposes AD for Tail Rotor Drive on Bell 206 Model Helicopters
NAAA Member’s Spouse Uses Unique Learning Program to Expose N.D. Middle School Students to Agriculture
FAA Increases Duration of Aircraft Registration
Two ADs Affecting Bell 206 Model Helicopters
Renew Your Membership for 2023: We’re Better Together!
NAAA Releases Book of the Century! Buy It Today

December 5-8

2022 Ag Aviation Expo

Knoxville, TN

Lindsay Barber

(202) 546-5722

Full Calendar of Events
2022 Ag Aviation Expo Hotel Info
GPS Data Collection Project to Protect Ag Aircraft from Drones
Agriculture’s Air Force Book
Aerial Applicators’ Growing Role Video Download Files
100th Anniversary Press Room
Agricultural Aviation Mag.
NAAA/NAAREF Safety Videos
Customizable Aerial Application DIY Press Releases
NAAA Media Relations Kit
NAAA Award Nomination Forms
NAAA “Ag Wings of Tomorrow” Scholarship
Tower Outreach Tools
Tower Marking Warning Letters
Shooting-Response Checklist
NAAA UAV Safety Stuffers
NAAA UAV Encounter Checklist
Ag Aviation 101 Presentation
NAAA Professional Operating Guidelines Booklet
Aerial Applicator’s Manual
Contact Us
Search Back Issues
National Agricultural Aviation Association, 1440 Duke Street, Alexandria, VA 22314
Phone: 202-546-5722 | Fax: 202-546-5726 |

To ensure delivery of NAAA eNewsletter, please add ''
and '' to your email address book.

If you are still having problems receiving our emails, see our whitelisting page for more details.
National Agricultural Aviation Association