Civil GIS

QuestUAV 200 Successfully Flown In Antarctica

Ellsworthy Mountains, Antarctica. Check it out on Google Earth. Its at lat/long  -80 -80, its hundreds of miles from anywhere and its very, very white!  A team from Northumbria University (Dr Stuart Dunning and Prof John Woodward) left UK in Nov 2012 to do a variety of research projects in the mountains of this area.

Their UAVs went down ahead of them and were not seen again until the crew pitched their tent on the ice sheet.  Stuart, a rookie pilot, had only had a short two day training session prior to departure, but he still managed to pull the rabbit out of the hat.  With new UAVs, in an untested and hostile continent, and with virtually no comms whatsoever with the outside world to get assistance, Stuart systematically worked through the challenges to get a fully functional QuestUAV into the harsh mountain winds and flying a 1000ft pre programmed route.

With a proof of concept in the bag, and with the knowledge that a brand new pilot can take on a task like this, even after such short preparation, we are a very happy bunch of people back here.  Well done Stuart and well done Northumbria University!

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