A major announcement out of North Dakota today marks a leap forward for the advancing commercial drone industry, reports SAUS News.

The state’s Northern Plains UAS Test Site (NPUAST) received permission from the Federal Aviation Administration to conduct beyond-visual-line-of-sight flights from the Grand Forks, N.D., area.

It’s the first certificate of authorization awarded to a test site and supporters say is a testament of the NPUASTS’ culture of safety and professionalism.

The permissions give the test site a competitive edge and will likely attract droves of research partners looking to incorporate BVLOS into their operations. Otherwise, companies that have applied for waivers under the new Part 107 must sit and wait for their approvals.

According to SAUS News, many agree BVLOS capability is needed to advance the industry as a whole and allow it to reach its full potential for commercial applications.