Mission and Vision
The Unmanned Aircraft Systems Test Site at the University of Maryland stands at the forefront of UAS rulemaking, commercialization, and national airspace integration. Formed in 2014, test site experts leverage their approximately 150 years of combined experience in military and civilian aviation, engineering, and project management to accelerate the safe, responsible application of UAS in public and private industries.
The test site is one of only a handful of institutions across the country that work directly with the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) to advance UAS research and demonstrate operational capabilities, with the ultimate objective of seamlessly integrating UAS into national airspace. This collaboration, along with our expertise in operational procedures, empowers the Test Site to shape rules and industry standards related to UAS technology.
Test Site experts also play an important role in developing state policies that encourage UAS applications and innovations. Maryland’s Unmanned Aircraft Systems Research, Development, Regulation and Privacy Act of 2015 was written in collaboration with the test site’s Matt Scassero and Anthony Pucciarella and supported by the UAS industry.
Through our connection to the A. James Clark School of Engineering and relationships with the FAA and Naval Air Systems Command, the test site addresses private and public industry needs with innovative, tailored solutions. Our capabilities span the breadth of UAS technology—from airworthiness analysis to system integration and testing to flight operations. And our access to restricted military airspace and special FAA authorizations for research and test activities make it possible for partners to conduct operations beyond the civilian allowances granted under Part 107.
Our outreach efforts and internships help cultivate the next generation of innovators, supporting economic diversification and workforce development in Maryland and the Mid-Atlantic region.