Wednesday, October 16, 2019 - 08:30 am

Yesterday, the North Dakota Department of Commerce and the Northern Plains UAS Test Site (NPUASTS) hosted BVLOS in ND: Building a Statewide UAS Network, an all-day event that provided new information and insights to stakeholders, as well as details on the upcoming procurement and beginning implementation of the statewide UAS network.

In May of this year, the state of North Dakota invested $28 million in funding for a statewide network supporting UAS (drone) flights beyond visual line of sight (BVLOS). The network will build on previous UAS advancements in the state and support the safe integration of unmanned aircraft into the National Airspace System (NAS). As we move forward towards procurement and beginning implementation, this event provided an opportunity for stakeholders to gather information and collaborate.

Panels featured speakers from the FAA, NASA, the RTCA UAS committees, state agencies like the North Dakota Departments of Commerce, Transportation, and Mineral Resources, and the North Dakota Aeronautics Commission. They focused on network customers, state assets and investments, and UAS traffic management and performance based standards. Also announced at this event was the upcoming procurement opportunity related to developing and building the statewide UAS network infrastructure.

“This was an exciting day filled with people who are invested in seeing progress in North Dakota and who understand the impact this statewide network will have on our state,” said Nicholas Flom, Executive Director of the Northern Plains UAS Test Site. “We were thrilled to meet with everyone and we’re looking forward to getting this truly first-of-its-kind project off the ground.”

Presentation slides from the event will be available at, and information about the Statewide UAS Network, the Procurement, and more will be available at, within the next few weeks.