Remotely Piloted Aircraft: Analysis of the Deployment in Aeronautical Accident Investigation Bureau

Humberto Dorneles Santa Maria, Rodrigo Franklin Frogeri, Fabricio Pelloso Piurcosky, Liz Áurea Prado


This study analyzed Remotely Piloted Aircraft System (RPAS) deployment in the Regional Services of Aeronautical Accidents Investigation and Prevention (SERIPA – Brazil) as a support tool to investigate aviation accidents. Such review is justified by the acquisition and use of this equipment and new technology by investigators since 2017. Research aim was to analyze the perception of SERIPA investigators regarding the usefulness and ease of use of the RPAS equipment. We applied an adaptation of the Theoretical Model of Technology. Methodologically, the study was characterized as exploratory and carried out through an inductive logic and qualitative approach. A case study has been done with 14 investigators belonging to six Brazilian SERIPA units. In conclusion, the respondents deem the RPAS to be useful for aircraft accident investigation, and the equipment is of easy use. RPAS was observed as a tool capable of replacing manned aircraft in some crash sites. The external variable, i.e. crash site characteristics, emerged as a factor that influences the use of RPAS, as well as the transport of RPAS in commercial aircraft.


Airplane accident; Investigation; Technology Acceptance Model; Remotely piloted aircraft system; RPAS

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