Development of an Organisational Certification Process for Specific Category Drone Operations

Emrehan Öz, Eetu Heikkilä (Corresponding Author), Risto Tiusanen

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review

1 Citation (Scopus)
52 Downloads (Pure)


To govern and ensure the safety of increasing drone operations, the European Aviation Safety Agency (EASA) has defined three risk-based categories of unmanned aircraft system (UAS) operations. A large part of commercial UAS operations fall into the Specific category, which includes operations with medium risk that require an authority approval. One possible way to gain approval for these operations is the light UAS operator certificate (LUC) awarded by a national aviation authority. It offers organisations the privilege to assess and approve operations without applying for authorisation from an authority. However, only general information regarding the LUC is available in the European regulatory publications. Thus, there is currently a lack of detailed guidelines and practical information about the process and requirements for acquiring LUC status. This paper describes the development of a LUC application process model following a design science research approach. The model supports organisations to assess their LUC capabilities, develop their organisation, create the documentation to fulfil relevant requirements, and to apply for the certificate. Finally, the results of a case study where the process model was applied are presented.
Original languageEnglish
Article number278
Issue number10
Publication statusPublished - 27 Sept 2022
MoE publication typeA1 Journal article-refereed


  • drone
  • EASA
  • LUC
  • safety management system
  • SORA
  • Specific category
  • UAS
  • unmanned aviation


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