Terra Drone Europe is the first Dutch drone operator in possession of the Light UAS Operator Certificate (LUC), the most comprehensive form of licensing to operate in the Specific category. The company reports this in a press release. A lot of consultation with the Environment and Transport Inspectorate (ILT) preceded the issue of the permit.

Self-Authorize Operations

A LUC may be issued by a national aviation authority to a professional drone operator after it has demonstrated to operate under an approved safety management system according to EASA’s specifications and is capable of carry out risk assessments according to the required standards (SORA). One of the advantages of operating under a LUC is the ability to self-authorise operations that fall under a PDRA, without having to first submit a statement. LUC is valid in all EU Member States.

“Receiving LUC is of great importance to our company. It confirms the safety and quality standards that we maintain and allows us to further improve the level of service to our customers. We appreciate the constructive feedback and cooperation with the ILT during the process,” said Martijn Hoogenstraaten, Managing Director of Terra Drone Europe.


application for the LUC started in January 2021, shortly after the new EU regulation came into force. The entire process from preparation to obtaining the permit required more than one and a half years of solid work.

Terra Drone Europe’s Quality and HSE Manager, Pieter Franken, says: “It process was long and laborious because we were the first company to sign up. It was also new to the ILT and many hurdles had to be overcome. Some elements of the new EU regulations were still under development when we applied for LUC.”

About Terra Drone Europa

Terra Drone Europe is part of the global Terra Drone group and is a leading provider of geographic data acquisition, industrial inspections and high-quality aerial imagery, using unmanned aerial vehicles. As experts in their field, Terra Drone Europe has extensive knowledge and experience with Close Visual (CVI) and thermal inspections, geodesy, topographic measurements, LiDAR and 3D visualizations.

Founded more than 10 years ago, the company was the first Dutch company to receive the exemption for commercial flying drones in 2013, the first Dutch drone pilot license (RPA-L) in 2015 and the first ROC license for the Netherlands in 2015.