Another positive use story and in essence something being undertaken by commercial operations in Europe and Australia. USU students are flying under COA’s hopefully before some of them finish their courses rules will be in place to make this a commercially viable operation in the USA. Those students will be leaving with valuable skills.
Well done to the team from Utah State University for showing the way. There is great deal of information to be had as well http://aggieair.usu.edu/OurRef.html The team uses the Open Source Paparazzi autopilot and a 72 inch zagi style flying wing for their platform.
The AggieAir Flying Circus is a service center at the Utah Water Research Laboratory which provides high resolution, multispectral aerial imagery using a small, unmanned aerial system called AggieAir. Because AggieAir is a low-cost, easy-to-use platform it is able to map small areas quicker, more frequently, at finer resolution, and at a smaller cost than conventional remote sensing platforms (satellite and manned aircraft). Furthermore, AggieAir is independent of a runway, which gives the user the ability to launch the aircraft from virtually anywhere (see videos). Some applications for AggieAir include monitoring of soil moisture and evapotranspiration in irrigated agriculture, riparian habitat mapping, surveying construction projects, wetland mapping and monitoring, fish and wildlife tracking, etc.