Regulation (EU) 2018/1139 extended EU competence to all unmanned aircraft systems (UAS) providing for the establishment of common EU rules for all UAS, irrespective of their MTOM, using an operation-centric and risk-based approach.
The establishment of U-space airspaces and the provisions for U-space services are considered essential to respond to the growth of UAS operations — especially in low-level airspace — which is expected to outweigh the current volume of traffic of manned aircraft.
Some European companies are carrying out projects on urban air mobility (UAM), including the transport of passengers (air taxis). These projects make use of a new technologies and aircraft capabilities (vertical take-off and landing), whose characteristics and performance are not addressed by the current aviation regulations. Such aircraft will start operating with a pilot on board while their level of automation will evolve until they are remotely piloted and even autonomous.