If you’re thinking of buying the DJI Mavic 3, here’s some good news, at least for our European readers. From now on, you can fly this drone in fly in the new A1 Open Category. In other words, you no longer need to pass the piloting license exam, which will save you both time and money.
In a recently published announcement, DJI writes that the company is the recipient of the first-ever C1 drone certificate. It’s issued by the officially-recognized notified body of TÜV Rheinland for the European Union Safety Agency (EASA).
The C1 certificate for the Mavic 3 series requires users to update to C1-compliant firmware. And as DJI notes, it brings a number of advantages.
“Users can fly in the new A1 Open Category and will no longer have to pass the complex and costly A2 ‘Remote Piloting License’ exam. They will have more freedom to fly in environments they have been restricted from without the C1 certificate – unless obtaining special permission after an additional lengthy administrative process.”
DJI shares the main differences between flying the Mavic 3 series with or without C1 certificate:
|Operating Area||Operational Restrictions||Pilot Competence|
|With C1 certificate and C1-compliant firmware (flying in the A1 Open Category from now on and after 31 December 2023)||– No flying over uninvolved people (if it happens, should be minimized)- No flying over assemblies of people||– Read user manual- Obtain A1/A3 “Proof of Competence” basic drone certificate by taking an officially-recognized theoretical online exam with no limitations on attempts before passing|
|Without C1 certificate and without C1-compliant firmware (flying in the A2 Open Category until 31 December 2023; or in the A3 Open Category after 1 January 2024)||– No flying over uninvolved people- Keeping a minimum 50 m horizontal distance from people until 31 December 2023
– After 1 January 2024, flying in areas free from people and 150 metres horizonal distance or more away from properties
|– Read user manual- Obtain A2 “Remote Piloting License” by taking an officially- recognized theoretical online exam, and declaring self-practical training. When failing, the customer has to reapply for the exam with possible additional costs involved|
There are a few other requirements that the DJI Mavic 3 with the C1-compliant firmware needs to fulfill in order to free you from passing the license exam:
- The Mavic 3 series meets the new noise reduction level of 83db.
- When the ActiveTrack Intelligent Flight Mode is used to film people or objects, the distance from the person/object will be limited to 50 m. Beyond 50 m, ActiveTrack will be disabled.
- the Auxiliary LEDs will be turned on or off automatically during use, based on the actual environment, and
- the LEDs at the front arms of the drone will blink by default for the duration of the UAV being powered on.
The certification will be available to all DJI Mavic 3 owners from Q4 of 2022. “From that date, users can request it on a voluntary basis – easily and at no cost,” DJI writes. You’ll need to provide your drone serial number and confirmation that they you have updated to the firmware needed to obtain C1 certification. That’s everything DJI has announced so far, but the additional details are yet to come so stay tuned.