UAS Public COA Application Process

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(REVISED 12/21/17) Public UAS Operations; Applying for Certificate of Authorization or Waiver – A Guide for Public Service and Governmental Agencies.


This training course has been developed from information, provided to the presenter, by a Senior Aviation Analyst for the FAA. However, this study material is not represented in any way as an official FAA training course , and the FAA cautions that changes can happen almost daily.  When making application for the COA process, the FAA will provide the most current requirements.

The registration/login for the COA process, now identified as CAPS (COA Online Application System) has been changed but the process remains the same.  Upon our inquiry, the FAA responded to our questions as follows:

Question: Other than the registration and login, is the Public COA (334) process essentially the same as it was under E-COA? If not, what is different now?
Answer: The COA Approval process is the same, the tool has just been replaced

Question: Is the PDF for the old E-COA still valid or is there a replacement?
Answer: Yes it is still valid

Question: Is the CAPS page the correct entry point? It appears to be aimed at “contractors and FAA/DOT employees”, rather than fire/rescue/municipal/law enforcement, (334, 333, 101) etc.
Answer: Yes it is. There is a “Register Here” button for external users. One validated they will login using their email address

Question: Are there resources that you can provide regarding the new CAPS process for online public COA/Waiver processing?
Answer: We are working on job aids, and will share when they are available for release

Question: What are the “new options” that are provided in the new system?
Answer: The ability to draw the Operations on a map with different aeronautical chart layering

Question: Is there an update to the guidance document: COA sample application v 1-1.pdf?
Answer: Not at the current time

Question: What about the “required video” UAS NOTAM Registration? Is it still relevant?
Answer: This was not effected by the CAPS program deployment.

—-As time permits we will be revising our training video as needed.

The objective of this course is to provide a background understanding of the process, for the Public Agency applying for a Certificate of Authorization or Waiver (COA):

This course will cover:
The Public Declaration Letter
Preparation for a public COA/Waiver
Expanded COA Applications  (the Jurisdictional COA)
Training and Certification Programs
Aircraft Registration
The procedure for Emergency COA and Waivers
Part 107 Waiver alternative

The presentation is intended to help to clarify the process, of obtaining a Certificate of Authorization and Waiver, for a public agency, such as police, fire, search and rescue, emergency medical services and other governmental entities. The purpose of this course is not so much train for a particular skill but to assist public agencies in understanding the process of obtaining approval of a Certificate of Authorization or Waiver for Public UAS Operations.

There are four sections of this course, followed by a short quiz:
Developing Public UAS Programs
The COA Process
The COA Application
What If….
Total course length: 32 minutes

Public employees seeking to earn training credit may submit the syllabus to their training officer for approval.

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Resources and Downloads:


Purchase resources:

FAR Parts 61, 91 and 107 (FAR/AIM) (Kindle edition –

Section 1Developing a UAS Program
Lecture 1
Section 2The COA Process
Lecture 1
Section 3The Application Process
Lecture 1
Section 4What If?Free Preview

Lecture 1Free Preview

Section 5Conclusion and Review
Lecture 1
Final Quiz
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