Civil Aeronautics Authority
permit for the use of drones

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Permits the use of drones for research and education from Panama’s Civil Aeronautics Authority (AAC)

Please send the complete permit application package to the scientific permits office: stri-permits@si.edu. Because this application package contains sensitive, private information, all documents must be submitted through a secure transfer service or an encrypted email, with the password called in by phone or on a separate email.

The Civil Aeronautics Authority of Panama (AAC) by Resolution No. 120DSA/DJ/AAC of April 23 2016 regulates the operation of drones (unmanned, radio-controlled rockets and aircraft, UAV and UAS) in the Republic of Panama. All drones heavier than 250 grams that will operate in the Republic of Panama require AAC registration before use.

Please send the completed permit application package to the scientific permits office: stri-permits@si.edu 15 days in advance of proposed flight. Separate requests are required for flights on non-consecutive days.

  1. Valid Certificate of Operation for unmanned aircraft issued by the Civil Aeronautics Authority of Panama (AAC).
    a. AAC will recognize a Certificate of Operation for unmanned aircraft issued by a Contracting State, if the requirements for issuance of the certificate are at least equal to those required by the AAC or by a reciprocity agreement.
  2. In-person registration of the drone with the Civil Aeronautics Authority of Panama (AAC) at Marcos A. Gelabert Airport in Panama City.
    a. They will require the following information: drone brand, model, and serial number.
  3. Formulario de Solicitud de Permiso de Actividades Aéreas Especiales (DRONES) Dentro de la FIR CTA/PANAMA (Special Aerial Activities Permit Request Form (DRONES) within the FIR CTA/PANAMA) completed in Spanish and signed. (Please consult this list of independent translators if needed).
  4. Informed Consent Letter (written authorization required for overflights of private property, indigenous reserves, protected areas and the Panama Canal watershed).

NOTE: The ACC will not authorize overflights without the Informed Consent Letter(s).

Please contact the scientific permit office (stri-permits@si.edu) if you require additional information, or if in doubt if your research sites will require an informed consent letter.

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