On Thursday, the team behind NoFlyZone.org launched AirMap, a free, comprehensive digital map that allows unmanned aircraft system (UAS) operators to visualize the airspace around them, including areas where they may not be permitted to fly. AirMap gives users an easy to use, digital map that provides low altitude airspace information unmanned aircraft operators need in order to fly safely and avoid restricted airspace.
The new platform was conceived by Ben Marcus, the developer behind NoFlyZone.org, and Greg McNeal, an associate professor at Pepperdine University, Forbes contributor, and leading expert on UAV law.
Marcus and McNeal teamed up to launch AirMap after they realized drone operators needed a tool that would let them understand the complexities of restricted airspace for unmanned aircraft operations. Marcus, who co-founded leading aircraft brokerage firm jetAVIVA, will lead development and business growth functions. McNeal will apply his expertise and research in local regulatory environments to help AirMap reach and educate users throughout the country.
“As a drone operator I found it hard to know what the airspace rules were in the places where I wanted to fly. There were no accurate visuals or reliable electronic tools that could tell me and other operators where we can and cannot fly. AirMap solves this problem and helps to educate operators about this complex regulatory environment,” McNeal said in the press release.
“I want to help educate the public and operators about the complexities of airspace. As people who follow my writing know, my goal is to make sure that the industry can take off, and I think the best way to ensure that happens is to make it easy for people to understand complex regulations,” he told DRONELIFE.
AirMap displays airspace information from ground level up to 500 feet, including the appropriate airspace for recreational drone use, airspace that falls under the “Blanket COA” rules applicable to holders of FAA Section 333 exemptions for commercial UAS operations, Controlled airspace (Class B, C, D, and E), and requested no fly zones per the voluntary (but unenforceable) NoFlyZone.org, where anyone can request the flying public avoid their private property.
AirMap’s advisory board includes Dr. Steve Crocker, Internet pioneer and chairman of the ICANN, Stuart Banner, UCLA law professor and author of “Who Owns the Sky,” Tom McInerney, serial entrepreneur and former scientist at Apple, and Mike Mothner, founder and CEO of WPromote.
Currently in its beta stage, AirMap is free to use and available today at AirMap.io.
Alan is serial entrepreneur, active angel investor, and a drone enthusiast. He co-founded DRONELIFE.com to address the emerging commercial market for drones and drone technology. Prior to DRONELIFE.com, Alan co-founded Where.com, ThinkingScreen Media, and Nurse.com. Recently, Alan has co-founded Crowditz.com, a leader in Equity Crowdfunding Data, Analytics, and Insights. Alan can be reached at alan(at)dronelife.com