Drone Pilot Training

Aviation Safety Management Systems is a Part 141 Certificated Aviation Training Organisation. We have specific approval to conduct flight crew training and assess operational competency for unmanned aircraft operations.

Undertaking a flight competency assessment.
Photo credit: Vantage Point Photography

See the table below for a summary of courses offered. We have a drone training course to meet your needs.

UAS Pilot Certificate (Part 101)(enquire now)
The UAS Pilot Certificate (Part 101) is for those who only want to fly under Part 101 and want to understand their responsibilities and flying within 4km of an aerodrome.

The UAS Pilot Certificate (Part 101) is a two-day course comprised of the Ground Course and Flight Test.
UAS Pilot Certificate (Part 102 Operations)(enquire now)
The UAS Pilot Certificate (Part 102 Operations) is essential for anyone who wants to fly as a pilot for a Part 102 organisation. This course includes all of the content of the Part 101 certificate, plus an additional day in the classroom covering advanced material for Part 102 operations.

An additional endorsement is available for the Cook Islands, with additional requirements of the Cook Islands CAA to be met after the award of the certificate.
UAS Aviation Law(enquire now)
This course is for a person who intends to be the person with primary responsibility for UAS operations for a Part 102 organisation, but is not going to be one of the pilots.
UAV Agricultural Ratings(enquire now)
This advanced course is for a person who intends to use a UAV for the aerial application of agrichemicals. Separate ratings (and training) are available for UAV Aerial Spraying and UAV Aerial Topdressing.

Pre-requisites are: an approved pilot qualification; a current (within 12 months) flight test on the make and model of machine intended for spraying; and a chemical rating.

To proceed to the practical application of agrichemicals within the course, CAA will also require the candidate to hold or be operating under a Part 102 certificate that includes the privilege of aerial agrichemical application.
UAV Night Rating(enquire now)
This rating is for a person who intends to fly unshielded at night under a Part 102 certificate.

Pre-requisite: an approved pilot qualification.
UAS Operational Competency Assessment(enquire now)
For a UAV pilot who holds an approved pilot qualification and requires a 12 monthly operational competency assessment (OCA) for Part 102 operations.

The OCA is designed to test the pilot's knowledge of the applicable rules, application of the operator's approved procedures, and flying competence. As such, the OCA has three components:
  • a pre-OCA open book test;
  • assessment of the pilot's preparation for the OCA (treat it as a normal commercial job); and
  • the Flight Test.
Additional areas of assessment may be included in the flight test if required by the operator's exposition. This will occur when you have an approved departure from Part 101 which requires adherence to a particular operational procedure.
Flight Training(enquire now)
For anyone who wants hands-on flight instruction on flying their UAV.
We can provide customised training if a pilot requires training to achieve the standard required for a UAS Pilot Certificate or Operational Competency Assessment.

The Ground Course and Flight Test are common to a number of the certificates in the above table. Find out more about each of these components below.

Ground Course
Our ground course provides the knowledge to operate safely and effectively under Parts 101 and 102.

The course includes the following topics:
  • understanding airspace classifications and aviation maps;
  • operating in the vicinity of aerodromes;
  • the requirements in Part 101 for the operation of unmanned aircraft;
  • aviation weather;
  • hazard minimisation;
  • human factors issues; and
  • aviation radio awareness.

Other associated topics that may be of specific relevance to a particular course intake will also be covered.

Flight Test
The flight test, conducted for the award of a Pilot Certificate or as part of the annual OCA for Part 102 operators, is designed to assess the ability of the pilot to address the following topics:
  • flight planning including weather;
  • hazard assessment;
  • airspace knowledge and procedures if operating within 4km of an aerodrome;
  • battery management;
  • knowledge of RPAS systems;
  • failsafe functions (if any);
  • pre-flight checks;
  • take-off and landing;
  • 360 degree yaw-turn maintaining position;
  • four quarters of orientation;
  • ascending and descending circuits;
  • figure-of-8 flight path;
  • vertical 180 degree ascending and descending corkscrew; and
  • emergency situations.
A guide to the flight test can be downloaded here.