Involi KIVU – Track your drone

With KIVU, track in real time your drone.

Main benefits:

  • lightweight
  • affordable
  • rugged and waterproof
  • easy-to-use
  • self-sustainable (integrated battery)

Your KIVU tracker is connected to the INVOLI online platform, you can thus visualize both your drone and surrounding air traffic even at low altitude.

Air traffic data comes from INVOLI network.

Continuously tracking your drone with KIVU while checking your surrounding for potential collisions, you can minimize risks while flying, even beyond visual line of sight (BVLOS).

Know more about your environement thanks to dynamic geofencing around your drone, precise analytics tools and actionable insights.

Involi

Drone Delivery Canada unveils Robin XL

Drone Delivery Canada ‘DDC’ or the ‘Company’ ((TSX.V:FLT, OTC:TAKOF), is pleased to announce that it will begin testing of its Robin XL (Robin). The Robin has a lifting capability of 25lbs of payload, a travel range of 60km and is designed for harsher climates.

The Robin XL is larger than DDC’s Sparrow cargo delivery drone. The Robin has an electric power plant and boasts a payload capacity of 25 lbs and a flight distance of 60km. The Robin is engineered for harsher environments, heavier wind capability and colder temperatures than the Sparrow.

“Our engineering team has been working alongside various commercial partners and clients to develop the Robin to satisfy their commercial requirements,” stated Paul Di Benedetto, CTO at Drone Delivery Canada. “We are very excited to commence flights with the Robin as our technology continues to evolve to address the requirements of our customers around the globe,” added Di Benedetto.

The Robin XL will also feature the option to have automatic cargo deployment, no longer requiring a handler to remove the cargo upon arrival. With this automated payload release option, the Robin will be able to automatically release the cargo at its pre-defined drop off location and return to its originating point. The requirement for a cargo handler at the receiving side will no longer be required with this cargo deployment system.

The Robin will begin commercial testing in Southern Ontario and the Company looks to announce commercial routes for the Robin as early as Q2, 2020.

About Drone Delivery Canada Corp.

Drone Delivery Canada Corp. is a drone technology company focused on the design, development and implementation of its proprietary logistics software platform, using drones. The Company’s platform will be used as a Software as a Service (SaaS) model for government and corporate organizations globally.

Drone Delivery Canada Corp. is a publicly listed company trading on the TSX.V Exchange under the symbol FLT, on the U.S. OTC Q B market with Nasdaq International Designation under the symbol TAKOF and on the Frankfurt exchange in Germany under the symbol A2AMGZ.

Read more at: www.DroneDeliveryCanada.com

The Top Skills and Credentials You Should Have When Applying To a Drone Job

By: Mark Taylor, owner of Extreme Aerial Productions

It took some time to figure out the top skills and credentials to look for in new hires for my drone firm, Extreme Aerial Productions. While being a good camera operator and editor were obviously crucial, I wasn’t sure what else made a difference between a good drone operator and a great one. After eight years, I’m happy to say I’ve honed in on the skills and areas of knowledge that make a difference, not to mention the licenses I expect candidates to have as a baseline for applying to our company. Here’s my shortlist of what you should know and the credentials you should have to give you the best chance of getting a drone job.

Drone skills I’m looking for

I always look for the following in new hires:

 An understanding of camera settings and video settings, and how the two are different.

Knowing how to film well in both and where each medium is best utilized is key for

creating work that the client will love.

 They need to know how to photograph/film in real-time, not fix in post. That’s paramount.

If you want good pictures, you can’t just take mediocre ones and expect to make them

look good in post-production.

 They should have an understanding of time of the day, and how the filming techniques

will change depending on it. For example, knowing how to fly with the sun behind you

and avoiding drone shadows in the frame, while also maintaining great exposure.

 How and when to use ND filters and adjust accordingly.

 They should have the ability to manually fly in a way that’s smooth and gentle, so that

when the flights are sped up, footage is perfect. A lot of people I interview fly automatic

missions, and that isn’t true artistry for the finished product.

I also look for personality traits such as loyalty, dedication to work, being flexible with schedule changes at the last minute, humility (we aren’t fighter pilots), a deep willingness to serve the clients and the company, and the ability to think out of the box.

They should also be skilled in the following programs:

 Adobe Premier Pro

 Final Cut Pro X

 Adobe Photoshop Lightroom

 PIX4D, Drone Deploy, Ardupilot, PixHawk, MIssion Planner, Skyward (these are nice to

know, but not essential).

Licenses and types of insurance you’ll need

When applying to any drone job, make sure you have the following licenses and insurance beforehand. It will show potential employers that you’re a serious pilot:

 A Remote Pilot Certificate from the FAA (which you’ll need to renew every two years):

Don’t even think about showing up for a job interview without one. This certificate

demonstrates that you’re cognizant of operating requirements, regulations, and how to

safely fly a drone.

 Drone Aviation Liability Insurance: While it isn’t technically required by law, drone liability

insurance keeps you protected against third-party claims of injury or property damage.

Like car insurance, it takes the financial responsibility off your shoulders. Your insurer

will pay out damages. However, it doesn’t exempt you from any and all responsibility.

For example, if you flew your drone in a restricted area, you could still be held financially

accountable for damages. Pay as you go insurance companies are not an option for us!

 Hull Insurance: This insures the drones themselves against any possible damage. If you

accidentally fly your drone into a wall, you’ll be able to get partial or full-reimbursement

for a new one. Note that this only covers the drone, and not onboard equipment. If you

want to cover onboard equipment, you’ll have to consider getting a separate policy,

called payload insurance. This covers any equipment/ sensors attached to the drone.

 Invasion of Privacy Insurance: This covers you in the event that you invade someone’s

privacy with your drone. For example, let’s say you fly your drone inside a policy

coverage area, film someone, and then post the video online. The person filmed then

elects to sue you. Your policy will help cover you for the damages (though plenty of

restrictions do apply).

Hopefully you’ve found this list helpful in determining the skills and certifications that will put you in the best position possible for standing out when applying for drone jobs. Good luck, and never stop working on improving your craft and fueling your passion for aerial work.

Official Consortiq Comments for the NPRM of Remote Identification of Unmanned Aircraft Systems

ConsortiqConsortiq

Consortiq’s mission is to help organizations utilize UAS safely through consultancy, training and innovation. Our executive training and consulting team collectively has over 40 years of flying, 20,000 commercial hours, and over 10 years in the civilian UAS industry. We believe that it is particularly relevant to point out that many of Consortiq’s staff have experience as first responders (fire and police services) as well as Air Traffic Control administration.

Our global team includes instructors and consultants who have developed and executed UAS solutions for European, African, North American and South American federal and state government authorities. Consortiq has also worked with large energy producers, security organizations, economic development programs and many large private aviation companies as well as UAS operators and end users.

Consortiq was chosen as a steering committee lead by the Association for Unmanned Vehicle Systems International (AUVSI) to analyze and establish best practices, codes of conduct, training standards, and professionalism for UAS operations. Consortiq was then selected as an early adopter Training Provider for the Trusted Operator Program (TOP® ). Additionally, Consortiq was awarded first place for the AUVSI Xcellence Award in Education and Training at

the 2018 Xponential Conference.

Consortiq believes that our unique and trusted position in the UAS industry allows us to understand the real world requirements and consequences of integrating UAS into the National Airspace System. Consortiq further understands that the technological, logistical and administration aspects of such an undertaking will be challenging and will likely require adjustment and refinement as the system is implemented and applied. For this reason we understand that the system will not be perfect when implemented however all efforts should be made to identify and alter requirements that will obviously and unnecessarily adversely affect safety, efficiency, and privacy.

The following points are considered by Consortiq to need additional consideration. Where applicable we have outlined suggestions for mitigating the envisioned complications or obstacles.

Safety

First and foremost Consortiq understands that Remote ID has a place in ensuring the continued proven and exceptional safety record that UAS has in the NAS. It is well accepted that UAS have operated in the NAS as recreational and commercial craft for more than 50 years with very few incidents.

We do acknowledge that as “drones” have become cheaper and more available, more have been reported to the FAA as being flown recklessly or illegally, however the vast majority of these reports are unconfirmed and an even larger majority did not cause any confirmed damage, injury or interruption of activities whatsoever.

Knowing the above, it is absolutely understood that additional control and administration methods are needed as UAS numbers increase and are implemented for more uses in day to day life. However, a glaring omission in support of remote ID as it supports increased safety is a publicly available risk assessment that details the regulatory impact and the sound science that supports the proposed new regulation.

In fact, the analysis of all currently available data related to UAS operating in the NAS supports the conclusion that there is no safety case for implementing remote ID. In short, the NPRM does not provide information on any incident that remote ID would have prevented. Keep in mind, individuals that engage in malicious activities will purposely not follow regulations that will hinder their ability to complete their task.

Regardless of any regulation or enforcement, equipment will always be available to permit users to operate a UAS that does not comply with a remote ID requirement. Remote ID will absolutely not affect the ability for a bad actor to use UAS for malicious intent.

Privacy

As proposed, the remote ID requirement will put the RPIC of a UAS at personal risk every time they are piloting. The ability for anyone, public and law enforcement, to locate and therefore approach an RPIC while they are in control of a UAS will subject the RPIC to at least distraction, and at worst physical harm. It is well known that the majority of the public do not understand the uses and capabilities of UAS. There are many documented instances of UAS operators being confronted by members of the public that incorrectly assume the RPIC is using a UAS to violate their rights. Spying, and trespassing are two of the more common misconceptions.

Then add in the public’s ignorance about what is and is not allowed as it related to the NAS, and there are many reasons a member of the public may incorrectly assume they have cause to confront an RPIC while they are piloting. Requiring a UAS to broadcast the RPICs current location in a format that the public can easily access will certainly lead to more confrontations and incidents.

In addition to the risk the public can pose to an RPIC, there are equal concerns as it relates to law enforcement having instant access to the RPICs location. It is absolutely understood that there are circumstances that will require law enforcement to locate an RPIC, however this should be related to an actual public safety or law enforcement action. This should not be allowed simply because a law enforcement officer is “curious”.

Other than the obvious distraction approaching an RPIC while piloting will cause, there are many documented instances of law enforcement taking improper action towards UAS and RPICs because of ignorance of FAA and related UAS regulation.

As an example, arresting an RPIC for trespassing while piloting from their own property and flying their UAS in uncontrolled airspace because they flew over other property. Then add the additional unlawful ordinances that many municipalities are passing that infringe on the FAAs exclusive right to regulate the NAS, and this can expose RPICs to unlawful detention, search and seizure risks.

If a broadcast solution is required, it should be one that broadcasts a unique identifier with no human readable information. That identifier, just like a vehicle registration license plate, could be “seen” by the public and provided to the FAA or law enforcement should they think there is a violation occurring. Law enforcement should have immediate access to the information from an online portal or contact number if they can articulate an immediate law enforcement or public safety need.

If there is no immediate need, they can request the information to be provided for future contact (IE: not immediate contact which would distract the RPIC while in operation). A critical part of the above is mandatory training and education for the law enforcement agency before they gain access to the system. Additionally, jurisdictions that has unlawful ordinances or a history of attempting to supercede the FAAs sole ability to regulate UAS in the NAS, should not be allowed access to the system until the unlawful ordinances are removed.

An additional concern with broadcasting information such as a serial number etc in a readable

format is that this information could be collected, stored, shared and even cloned. Think “wardriving” but for UAS. Not only would this be an issue for compiling personal and possibly sensitive information about the UAS and operator, but the information could provide bad actors with information on the points of interest UAS are being used to document. Even if the point of interest isn’t a sensitive location, being able to identify locations of high UAS activity could be an issue.

As many of these UAS range from a couple thousand to tens of thousands of dollars, how long will it be before “UAS-Jacking” is a thing? Then add in additional payloads (sensors or deliveries) and giving bad actors easy access to where they can find these UAS at any given time is just a bad idea. Also, think about the ability to take this broadcasted info and clone it onto another UAS. Bad actors could operate their UAS illegally and implicate other RPICs. This wouldn’t be like a stolen vehicle license plate where the owner would know the plate is missing and report it stolen.

In a public broadcast system, the RPIC would have no idea their information was being collected and possibly used for nefarious intent. Current similar systems such as DJIs Aeroscope have already gained the attention of hackers for manipulation for use as a form of activism and for obfuscation.

Efficiency

Finally, we feel that the proposed rules as written will hamper development and innovation of the use of UAS as well as increase the cost of operation. Focusing first on the financial aspect of this topic, it is important to understand that the vast majority of operators are either recreational or small, one-person commercial operations.

As far as recreational pilots are concerned, many of these people own multiple craft, most of which are simple R/C airplanes that have no autonomous ability. Having to pay to register each of these craft every few years as opposed to one registration as it is now, is going to be overly cumbersome. Then add the requirement to only fly these types of craft at an approved CBO FRIA, which will require paying a fee to the CBO (AMA etc) as well as the site membership fees, and this can easily double (or more) the cost for the hobby. The vast majority of recreational pilots have been flying their craft for decades on public and private property in a manner that have not interfered with manned operations. Much of the time they are flying lower than the surrounding trees and structures.

Even a recreational pilot that wants to fly their small craft in their own backyard, under a tree canopy 3 feet off the ground will be in violation under the proposed rules. Additionally, adding an additional device to a legacy craft does not seem to be allowed by the proposed rules and even if it does, would require additional expense. It should also be noted that these rules would have a negative impact on STEM programs that utilize UAS in their curriculum.

These programs already struggle with budgeting and cost and adding additional fees or requirements will certainly hamper the ability to get youth involved in the UAS technology. US government agencies should look for ways to promote and facilitate programs such as STEM.

The proposed rules as written will do the exact opposite.

In synopsis, we fail to see how this proposed remote ID solution will increase safety or further UAS integration into the NAS. There has been no assertion that had this proposed solution been in place, it would have prevented a previous incident. Further, there has been no assertion that the proposed solution will allow any increase in situational awareness for manned aircraft as it relates to UAS deconfliction.

It seems at best the only result of this proposal will be an overall reduction of UAS (commercial and recreational) being flown, and at worst, a false sense of compliance that will promote the use of UAS without following the new regulation. Simply put, the thousands of commercial and recreation UAS operators that find compliance overly burdensome and in some cases impossible, will continue to operate outside of the new regulation. With the dispersed and sporadic nature of UAS operations, enforcement, even with an unrealistic budget for additional manpower, will not be possible.

Consortiq respectfully requests the FAA re-evaluate the requirement of a remote ID solution.

This should begin by completing a risk assessment to accurately identify the problem, followed by soliciting input from the actual operators affected that addresses the actual risks identified.

  1. Academy of Model Aeronautics https://www.modelaircraft.org/radio-control
  2. FAA UAS Sighting Report

    https://www.faa.gov/uas/resources/public_records/uas_sightings_report/
  3. Remote ID: The Unintended Consequences

    https://www.linkedin.com/pulse/remote-id-unintended-consequences-john-fernandez/

New Drone Pilot Training Program Builds Skills for the Renewable Energy Industry

Zephyr Drone Pilot Boot Camp

The new “Drone Pilot Boot Camp + FAA Part 107 Exam Prep” is a collaboration between three companies: HeatSpring, Little Arms, and Unmanned Experts. They’ve built this unmanned aircract commercial operations course especially for engineering, construction and renewable energy firms.

Keven Gambold is the instructor. Formerly a combat pilot for the British Royal Air Force, Keven has spent the past eight years developing training programs for drone pilots with Unmanned Experts.

Logging flight time is critical for a great course. Little Arms is the software firm behind the top-rated Zephyr drone simulation software. Zephyr works across any platform and has a built-in LMS that allows Keven to review student progress and coach each individual student on their flying. Flying the Zephyr simulations with Keven’s oversight is an incredible way to build skills quickly and efficiently.

Kyle Bishop, CEO at Little Arms says, “We’re proud to announce our new partnership with HeatSpring and Unmanned Experts. The UAS industry is a constantly changing place, establishing effective and standardized training is a great way to help drive the industry forward as a whole.”

HeatSpring brings twelve years of technical online education and a deep understanding of what the market expects from a great course. They’ve spent two years designing this course and finding the right partnerships to make it happen.

“We looked at more than a dozen drone flight simulators and Zephyr was the clear winner for us,” according to Brian Hayden, co-founder at HeatSpring. “It’s built for a training environment and able to work on any machine.”

The course is great for anybody who wants to become a drone pilot, but the primary aim of the course is to unlock new opportunities for engineering, construction, and renewable energy firms. Drones are a powerful and relatively inexpensive way to increase revenue and lower costs on projects big and small.

The next course begins in April 2020 – students who enroll get immediate access to their Zephyr software program. Students who enroll in this session also receive a free FlySky FS-i6S Transmitter.

AO Drones launches the iconic Motorola Razr in the Dubai sky

Dubai, UAE – AO Drones, the specialist global provider of drone light shows, recently delivered an airborne show for a video campaign promoting Motorola’s reimagination of its iconic Razr flip phone in the Middle East and Africa. The resulting video quickly attracted over 200,000 views through Motorola’s social media channels.

The teams from AO Drones and AO Creative, part of entertainment lighting visionary AO Technology, worked in collaboration with Motorola and netizency, the digital marketing agency, to design the visual content, including animated logos and brand names. AO Drones’ design team even created an animation of the Razr flip phone opening, closing and rotating in the sky.

Vinayak Shenoy, Head of Marketing, Middle East and Africa for Motorola’s parent company Lenovo, said of the Razr launch event, “We felt that this drone show symbolises what this product is all about – a great blend of technology and art. . . The beauty of 120 drones rising in the air all together, the whirring of the drones and the beautiful formations is something I’m going to remember for a very long time.”

AO’s founder and executive producer, Marco Niedermeier says: “From the beginning we asked, what was the intention? It was to create great content for social media and get maximum shares and engagement. So we looked after the whole production – the drone show, the film – but without an invited audience on-site.”

Specially developed for entertainment productions, the AO Drones fleet uses an advanced control platform to deliver flexible, efficient and safe shows. What’s more, the drones’ speed – up to 10 metres per second – and accuracy mean that their ‘visible’ time in the air is optimised, making these shows a viable option for event productions everywhere.

Adding a further dimension to the video, camera drones provided striking ‘fly-through’ footage, taking the viewer up and into the drone formation, even passing directly through the Motorola logo. “It’s not just filming a flat logo in the sky,” says Niedermeier. “This really is three-dimensional, dynamic show content.”

He concludes, “We are very happy that Motorola chose to use a drone show for their product launch. Working with Motorola and netizency has been such a positive experience, and the result speaks for itself.”

AO Drones is a division of AO Technology. They combine immersive experience in the entertainment industry with innovative technology to bring live entertainment to a whole new level. AO Drones’ missionis to enhance all types and sizes of events and performances with spectacularly choreographed, volumetric images in the sky.

From their bases in Germany and United Arab Emirates, they craft the very bestdrone entertainment experiences around the world. The company’s global network of experts and their international team support the customers to create highlights for their events and mind-blowing marketing tools for their brand. www.ao-technology.com/ao-drones

Cubic Signs Agreement with US Special Operations for Intelligence, Surveillance and Reconnaissance R&D

SAN DIEGO- Cubic Corporation (NYSE: CUB) today announced that its Cubic Mission Solutions business division signed a cooperative research and development agreement (CRADA) with Special Operations Forces Acquisition, Technology and Logistics (SOF AT&L) to work on research and development (R&D) for cutting-edge airborne payload technologies for use within the Department of Defense. The effort will primarily be performed by ISR Systems, a wholly owned subsidiary of Cubic Corporation.

“We are pleased to join forces with SOF AT&L to support its mission in developing advanced and innovative technologies in support of global special operations,” said Jerry Madigan, president of ISR Systems, Cubic Mission Solutions. “The CRADA agreement offers a great framework for Cubic’s autonomous systems team to collaborate and to share information.”

Cubic delivers a low risk, robust Unmanned Aircraft System (UAS) ISR platform with a highly expeditionary footprint to satisfy and enhance any ISR mission. Cubic’s ISR-ONE offers a unique blend of high capability and performance, delivered within a Group III UAS platform.

About Cubic Corporation

Cubic is a technology-driven, market-leading provider of integrated solutions that increase situational understanding for transportation, defense C4ISR and training customers worldwide to decrease urban congestion and improve the militaries’ effectiveness and operational readiness.Our teams innovate to make a positive difference in people’s lives. We simplify their daily journeys. We promote mission success and safety for those who serve their nation. For more information about Cubic, please visit www.cubic.com or on Twitter @CubicCorp

Altitude Angel Exhibit at World ATM Congress 2020

Altitude Angel will be exhibiting at World ATM Congress in Madrid on 10th – 12th March 2020.

As the world’s largest international air traffic management (ATM) exhibition and conference, this event is unique in bringing together world leading air navigation service providers (ANSPs), stakeholders, developers and experts in the field of aviation.

If you’re planning to attend the event and would like to discuss our world-leading UTM Operating System, be sure to visit stand #526, where we’ll be exhibiting alongside our partner Frequentis. We’ll be discussing our recent partnering with LVNL, our fully-operational UTM deployment with NATS, and what we have planned for Avinor.

To book a private demonstration of our powerful and customisable UTM Operating System, GuardianUTM O/S, please email us in advanced at [email protected] or click the link below.

Schedule a demonstration of GuardianUTM O/S

Aerial Firefighting North America 2020 Prepares for the Opening Next Week

Tangent Link’s Aerial Firefighting North America 2020 (AFF North America 2020) Conference and Exhibition is the must-attend event for anyone involved in the aerial firefighting domain. Hosted at McClellan Conference Center in Sacramento, California between 4 and 5 March, the event features an array of presentations on a diverse range of subjects.

California has been no stranger to wildfires in recent months and the conference programme for day one will see a wide range of presentations which reflect on them, and the accompanying aerial responses by those intimately involved.

With Rear Admiral Terry Loughran, CB, FRAeS, Royal Navy as Chair the day kicks off with a series of keynote and welcoming addresses from Chief Thom Porter, Director of CAL FIRE; Brian S. Marshal, State Fire & Rescue Chief FIRESCOPE Executive Director, California Governor’s Office of Emergency Services (Cal OES) and Jeffrey Rupert, Director of the Office of Wildland Fire in the US Department of the Interior.

Delegates will also hear presentations from Dennis Brown, CAL FIRE’s Senior Chief of Aviation and Wayne Coulson, President and Chief executive Officer of Canada’s Coulson Aviation.

Challenges for pilots in the demanding aerial fire-fighting mission also come under the spotlight along with advances in airframe design with presentations from Viking Air and the Conair Group.

The demanding nature of night-time aerial firefighting will round off day one: Representatives of the California National Guard will discuss military night-time air operations, while Eric Pacheco,Senior Pilot with the county of Los Angeles Fire Department will share his thoughts on night snorkelling. Mr. Pacheco’s paper will provide a brief history of the department’s air operations section with a primary emphasis on night aerial firefighting and the use of night vision goggles. His presentation will cover all the phases of the development and the processes used by the air operations section for night snorkelling, and the challenges tackled to implement this.

Commander Wayne Rigg, who overseas aviation innovation, capability and strategy for the County Fire Authority in Australia will discuss trials of night fire suppression operations. Cmdr. Rigg’s presentation will detail the 2017/2018 Night Fire Suppression Operations (NFSO) Trial performed in the state of Victoria. This tested the ability to hover fill helicopters at night and the efficiency of night vision technology to attack fires from the air at a time when aircraft were previously required to be on the ground by last light. The trial provided an opportunity to utilise helicopters to extend daytime operations into the night and use the window of reduced fire behaviour to assist ground crews in suppressing fires.

This trial had two phases the first of which was to obtain regulatory approval to undertake night vision firebombing. Phase 2 followed which marked the first time that night firebombing was undertaken on bushfires in Australia.

Day Two

With climate change and its effects dominating the news agenda, the second day of the conference kicks off with a look at the contribution rising temperatures are making vis-à-vis forest fires. Professor Johann Goldammer, Director of Germany’s Global Fire Monitoring Centre will give a keynote address on Global Warming and Landscape Fires. This will present a proposal to establish an international instrument for streamlining the governance of a coalition of national agencies, international organisations and the private sector. The initial proposal will be presented with regards to interoperability, common standard operating procedures; periods and areas of asset deployment; financial sustainability and a tentative timeline. Prof. Goldammer will be joined by Richard Alder, General Manager of Australia’s National Aerial Firefighting Centre, who will reflect on that country’s devastating 2019/2020 bushfires season and will ask whether such conflagrations will become the ‘new normal”? Technology will also fall under the conference’s gaze during day two with presentations on advanced fire retardant technology and the use of advanced firefighting liquids, fire intelligence and information systems and the growing interest in using Unmanned Aerial Vehicles to help combat wildfires.

The session on new technological advances will include a presentation from Dan Reese, President of Global SuperTanker Services, who will reflect on his company’s recent experiences performing aerial firefighting in the Amazon. Mr. Reese will discuss the challenges to aerial firefighting in terms of safety and logistics, examining the information aircrews need to fight fires, but which might not always be readily identified or available. He will argue that in today’s age of new technology and the ever-present costs associated with aviation, no one country, state or government can afford an inexhaustible fleet of aerial firefighting platforms. As a result, he posits that the greatest collective challenge aerial firefighters face is standardisation: “If we are to seamlessly integrate when assisting our neighbours, we must be prepared.” Mr. Reese will illustrate these issues with a case study examining the challenges and mitigations faced when a North American company answered the call to assist a South American country with aerial firefighting.

Recent experiences in aerial firefighting have witnessed the increased participation of military aircraft to assist these efforts. Lt Colonel Bradley G. Ross, Program Manager for the Modular Airborne Firefighting System (MAFFS) from the US Air Force’s 302nd Airlift Wing will examine the configuration and use of military aircraft in aerial firefighting. His presentation will cover a brief history of military aircraft use to this end focusing on how they have been re-purposed temporarily or permanently for this new mission. He will examine the specifics of the Lockheed Martin C-130 Hercules MAFFS configuration, how it is currently being used and its future potential, along with other military aircraft configurations currently employed as aerial firefighting platforms.

Utah Signs Participating Addendum with DroneUp Providing Public Sector Agencies Access to Drone Services

DroneUp, LLC and the State of Utah have signed a Participating Addendum for the NASPO ValuePoint contract for Unmanned Aerial Vehicle services established as Contract Number Pa3390. This begins the offering for the purchase of complete drone solutions to all state agencies, commissions, political subdivisions, institutions, and local public bodies allowed by law. The award is the first of its kind for the drone industry and a highly anticipated announcement.

DroneUp, an end-to-end drone pilot service provider for aerial data collection was awarded the Unmanned Aerial Systems (UAS) Services Master Agreement #E194-79435 by the Commonwealth of Virginia in August 2019. The services under the award are available for use by all 50 states, the District of Columbia, and the territories of the United States through the National Association of State Procurement Officials (NASPO) ValuePoint Cooperative Purchasing Organization. The State of Utah is now able to use the award for the benefit of state departments, institutions, agencies, political subdivisions, and other eligible entities

DroneUp’s award includes but is not limited to service categories for Emergency Support Services, Law Enforcement Support, Aerial Inspection or Mapping Data Services, Agricultural and Gaming, and Agency Media Relations and Marketing. It’s anticipated that the primary users will be Agriculture & Game Management, Emergency Management, Transportation, Forestry, Mines, Minerals and Energy, and Public Universities and Community Colleges.

Tom Walker, DroneUp’s CEO, stated “Utah allows businesses to thrive through education and innovation. DroneUp looks forward to supporting our hardworking state and local agencies both in Utah and nationwide.”