Does LAANC unlock my DJI Geofence in a no-fly zone (NFZ)?

No. Even though we have authorization directly from the FAA, we still need to provide the drone with a DJI unlock code so the aircraft knows it’s okay to take off.

The first step for flying in controlled airspace is to receive our authorization. This can be through immediate LAANC approvals, further coordinated LAANC, or even an airspace authorization or waiver through the FAA’s Dronezone.

You may also run into the DJI Geofence System in airspace that is not listed as controlled airspace by the FAA.

Once we have the authorization, we then have to tell the drone (specifically DJI hardware) that it’s okay to fly. This is controlled through their Geofencing system, and you can receive an Unlock Code from DJI once you have authorization (done through their apps or their website). Based on their maps, if you’re in a blue zone, you can request a “Self Unlock“.

If you’re in a red/restricted DJI zone, this will require a “Custom Unlock” through their website, and requires you to upload proof of your authorization. If you have an Aloft (formerly Kittyhawk) Enterprise account, you can easily download your LAANC authorization as a .PDF from the Air  Control web dashboard (Manage> Authorizations).

While it’s currently a two-step process, we’re working on making it a seamless experience where receiving authorization could also request this unlock code at the same time.