Kansas State Polytechnic claims its UAS flight and operations degree option is the nation’s first to introduce flying beyond visual line of sight (BVLOS) into college curriculum, and the campus has been granted a BVLOS waiver from the FAA, the first granted to a university by the FAA. This fall, two upper-division courses—Advanced Fixed Wing Operations and Flight and Field Operations—incorporated BVLOS into their flight labs.
The BVLOS waiver was first granted by the FAA to Kansas State Polytechnic's Applied Aviation Research Center this summer before being integrated into the UAS degree curriculum. The campus also has an FAA waiver for UAS night operations, which also has been added to several courses.
"[Students} first had to review the FAA waiver and understand how to fully comply with its specific requirements," said Travis Balthazor, flight operations manager of the university’s Applied Aviation Research Center. "Students also learned new aspects of mission planning and how to best mitigate risk in the field, including using ADS-B software, which monitors other aircraft in their flight area."