We and our drones

Romana Fürnkranz (2016) and Christoph Bertos (2018) hold a valid distance pilot licence and have submitted the health certificates required to obtain the drone licences to Austro Control.

We have valid certificates and operating licences for a quadrocopter of Category A, area of operation I and a Category C octocopter, area of operation III.

Both copters are insured beyond the inevitable scope. Furthermore, we have upright trade licences in the fields of photography and advertising.


Drones in Austria

For the area of deployment I (uninhabited area with maximum secondary development such as warehouses, silos, empty buildings), approx. 3000 category A drones are listed by Austro Control throughout Austria.

For the area of operation II (settlement area with primary buildings such as residential buildings, schools, shops, offices – i.e. areas which essentially serve as residential, commercial or recreational areas), approx. 120 multicopters of categories B and C are approved or registered in the list throughout Austria.

Only approx. 90 Category C multicopters are approved and registered in the Austro Control list for use in Area III (densely populated or spatially closed residential areas, local centres, cities) throughout Austria.

Since November 2018, Austro Control has only listed the operational areas I – III (instead of I – IV).

On Austrian drone pages that have not yet been updated, you will therefore still find the number IV, which corresponds to today’s operational area III.

  • Area of operation I – undeveloped terrain on which there are buildings that can no longer be inhabited at most
  • Area of operation II – built-up area (residential buildings, offices, shops)
  • Application area III – densely populated area, local centres, cities

Category A quadrocopters, which are usually available on the market, may only be used in unpopulated areas and outside restricted flight zones. As soon as the drone has a camera on board or is heavier than 250 grams, a permit from Austro Control is required.

For flights over populated areas, only multi-redundant Class B and Class C multicopters certified by Austro Control are permitted. For use in densely populated areas, the Octocopter must not weigh more than 5 kg. A pilot’s license and insurance are required.

If it is an area with additional flight restrictions – which applies to almost the entire airspace of Vienna – individual permits for planned drone flights are required from the responsible authorities. If it is a so-called „entry lane“, the approval by Austro Control can take up to 2 weeks and costs up to  1000€.

 

For flights in nature reserves, permits from the responsible district or state authorities are required.

No. UAV flights over crowds are generally prohibited and may also violate the Data Protection Act, which prohibits the distribution of photographs of people without their express permission.

No. The drone must be back on the ground no later than 6 p.m. or at the end of the evening twilight. The start may take place from 8 a.m. or at the beginning of civil twilight.

Penalties of up to 22,000 € and withdrawal of the drone pilot’s licence make illegal flying a game of hazard from which every professional refrains.


General information about drones

Commercial drones are used for surveying and research purposes (e.g. archaeology), for municipalities, fire brigades, hunters and farmers (searching for deer fawns before mowing meadows) to determine damage for insurance companies, and for inspection work (wind turbines, roof plumbers). Only a small proportion of commercial drones are owned by photographers and film production companies.

Depending on design, weight, outside temperature, wind and battery care, small drones can fly between 15 and 30 minutes, large multicopters between 10 and 20 minutes. Afterwards a landing with battery change is necessary.

For both copters we have battery sets for 3 flight cycles.

Drones and their possibilities also fascinate model pilots and hobby pilots. It makes sense to finance your hobby by selling aerial photos at the same time. Accordingly favorable offers are to be found in the net.

Most of these photos are taken illegally. With a small quadrocopter from the electrical supermarket, the possibilities to legally take pictures of buildings are negligible, as they can only be flown over undeveloped areas.

Cheap drones from the supermarket can usually only supply pictures in limited quality.
Above all, most hobby drone pilots pursue a main occupation that has nothing to do with photography. Professional competence and creativity are therefore hardly available. This applies increasingly to post production, which even many photographers with a trade licence are not proficient in.

Those who want to finance their hobby and earn their income through a main occupation, do not calculate their price economically including all investments and expenses, but are happy about a small pocket money. Serious full-time photographers, who provide a professional and laborintensive job, do not consider providers of unrealistic dumping prices a serious competitor – because they are not.