Agricultural operations include aerial agrichemical operation (spraying, topdressing, and vertebrate toxic agents) as well as certain other activities such as transporting loads used in agriculture, horticulture, or forestry.
All of these activities require a Part 102 exposition with the appropriate privileges.
For aerial agrichemical application you will also require the appropriate training.
Training for Aerial Agrichemical Application
For spraying, topdressing, and VTA you will require:
- Our Advanced UAS Remote Pilot Certificate (or equivalent)
- A Pilot Chemical Rating certificate
- A competency assessment conducted using your agricultural UAV
- A UAV Agricultural Rating with the relevant endorsement
Additional Requirements for Vertebrate Toxic Agents (VTA)
For VTA you will also need a Controlled Substance Licence, which you can apply for after completing the Pilot Chemical Rating course. To find out the requirements for a CSL and the application process, see the WorkSafe website.
Part 102 Certification
You will always require Part 102 Certification if applying agrichemicals aerially.
You will also always require Part 102 Certification if your UAV has a gross mass (including batteries/fuel and chemical payload) of greater than 25kg.
Part 102 certification requires an extensive manual of procedures called an ‘exposition’. Fenix UAS Ltd is the leading exposition writer for UAV operations. We are constantly refining our procedures, and we will work with you until the exposition has been approved by the Civil Aviation Authority and your Part 102 certificate has been issued.
For more information about Part 102 certification click here.
Which Agricultural Drone?
Agricultural drones are constantly evolving, with the major manufacturers releasing a new model at least once a year. Which agricultural drone is right for you depends on what you want to do and the features on the latest models. The best option is to talk to the retailer/reseller. The two most reputable brands sold in New Zealand are DJI and XAG. For DJI agricultural drones talk to Ferntech, and for XAG talk to Airborne Solutions.
If you import an agricultural/spray drone from overseas then the CAA will require that it is inspected before it is flown. To arrange an inspection contact Jackson UAS.