Inside Unmanned Systems

APR-MAY 2018

Inside Unmanned Systems provides actionable business intelligence to decision-makers and influencers operating within the global UAS community. Features include analysis of key technologies, policy/regulatory developments and new product design.

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45 April/May 2018 unmanned systems inside ENGINEERING. PRACTICE. POLICY. The Drone Evolution During a panel at SXSW 2018, experts gave their insights into the drone market, and how to make money in this rapidly changing industry. T hose attending Austin's SXSW 2018 had the opportunity to take in a variety of concerts, walk the large tradeshow f loor and sit in on panel discussions—including a tech startup session where drone in- dustry experts outlined how to make money in the unmanned aircraft sys- tems (UAS) market. "Taking Advantage of the Drone Evolution Revolution—How to Make Money in the Drone World Now, Soon and in the Future," was moderated by Inside Unmanned Systems contributor Major General (ret) James Poss, who is the CEO of ISR Ideas. Panelists includ- ed Uber Elevate's Director of Airspace Systems Tom Prevot, SkySpecs CEO Danny Ellis, and Duetto Group CEO Shawn Bullard. During the session, panelists looked at various markets deploying con- sumer drones, beginning with those that can easily follow current Part 107 regulations and still realize the many benef its drones provide, and then moving on to industries that need more f lexibility, such as the ability to f ly beyond visual line of sight (BVLOS) or over people, before drones can offer real value. FILM, PRESS AND REAL ESTATE When looking at which markets f it best within Part 107 rules, it basi- cally comes down to applications that by Renee Knight Turn to page 8 for the General Overview from Major General (ret) James Poss. only require users to strap a camera to a drone to get the information they need—which is why movies, media and real estate were first on the list, Poss said. There's also typically no need to f ly over people not involved in the opera- tion or to f ly BVLOS in these markets, Prevot said, making them perfect for current drone rules. The movie industry was the first to adopt UAS whole heartedly, Poss said, and many of the beautiful aerial scenes you see today were captured via drone. UAS are also becoming more popular in the media, with CNN taking a huge step forward by receiving the f irst waivers to f ly over people, which can be key when covering breaking news. Ellis and Bullard both agreed these areas offer a lot of opportunity, but stressed it can be challenging for drone service providers to break in if they don't have any industry experience. "Successful people in any industry were already successful and then start- ed f lying drones to enhance their ca- pabilities," said Ellis, whose company focuses on wind turbine inspections. "Just because you get a drone and become a decent DJI Phantom pilot doesn't mean you're going to become a Hollywood producer tomorrow." SAVING LIVES This category includes first responders, firefighters and hospitals that might be looking for ways to integrate drones into their operations. While Poss said this seems like a pretty good area that typically only requires cameras and f lights within visual line of sight, there certainly are challenges that come with these life-saving applications. For example, deploying drones to help fight large fires can become pretty complex, Prevot said, and BVLOS op- erations might be necessary at times. This application also requires a ro- bust unmanned traffic management (UTM) system to distribute informa- tion and ensure everyone knows where drones are f lying and which operations are priority. Research is being done by NASA and other parties to develop a UTM system that safely integrates drones into the national airspace no matter the mission, and while progress is being made, it could be awhile before a full UTM system is in place. Bullard recently worked with a large health organization to implement drones into their operations, and said it isn't as easy to accomplish as you might think. For example, right now medical helicopters can f ly pretty much any- where they want. Would drones car- THE DRONE PART DOES NOT MATTER. ALL THAT MATTERS IS YOU ARE GIVING THEM DATA THAT HELPS THEM DRIVE BETTER BUSINESS DECISIONS. IF YOU CAN DRIVE BETTER BUSINESS DECISIONS, PEOPLE ARE GOING TO CARE. Danny Ellis, CEO of SkySpecs "

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