UVM's Unmanned Aircraft System (UAS)/Drone Workshop is comprised of both classroom and field site components, with participants logging in 18 total training hours. After completion of the program, participants will understand how they can employ drones to collect data and gain working knowledge of the technologies required to turn that data into usable information for geospatial analysis.


Module 1: Introduction

  • Why UAS?
  • Examples
  • Platforms
  • Sensors

Module 2: Flight Planning

  • Regulations
  • Airspace
  • Checklists
  • Personnel
  • Equipment
  • Flight plans

Module 3: Flight Operations

  • Launch/land fixed-wing UAS
  • Operate multi-rotor UAS
  • Mapping using fixed-wing UAS
  • Mapping using multi-rotor UAS
  • Oblique imagery captures using multi-rotor UAS
  • Video imagery captures using multi-rotor UAS
  • Inspection data capture using multi-rotor UAS
  • 3D modeling data capture using multi-rotor UAS
  • Virtual reality data capture using multi-rotor UAS

Module 4: Data processing

  • Flight data processing
  • Generating orthophotos (Pix 4D)
  • Generating point clouds (Pix 4D)
  • Generating 3D mesh (Pix 4D)
  • Generating virtual reality (Hangar)

Module 5: Analytics

  • 2D Mapping (ArcGIS/QGIS)
  • Point cloud analysis (ArcGIS/QT Modeler)
  • Terrain analysis (ArcGIS/QT Modeler)
  • Volume estimation (QT Modeler)

Module 6: Data Sharing

  • Online web maps (ArcGIS Online)
  • 3D Models (SketchFab)
  • Virtual reality (Hangar)

Module 7: Considerations

  • Case studies
  • IT
  • Personnel
  • Organizational challenges

Learning Objectives

Aiken Teaching Lab

  • Drone Overview: Safety, platforms, sensors, regulations, example datasets
  • Flight Operations Overview: eMotion demo, flight videos, checklists, documentation
  • Flight Planning: Participants learn how to plan a mission using the flight planning software eMotion and Pix4D Capture App
  • Data Processing: Participants will learn how to process the data collected in the field. Participants will learn about the quality report and data products the processing creates
  • Data Analysis: Participants will open the collected data in different software and data formats and perform basic analysis
    • Software: QT Modeler, ArcGIS
    • Data: Imagery (.tif), digital surface model (.tif), digital terrain model (.tif), 3D Point Cloud (.laz/.las)

Field Site*

  • Fixed-Wing Flight Operations: Participants will learn how to plan and conduct a mission using fixed-wing platform eBee
  • Quadcopter Flight Operations: Participants will learn how to plan and conduct a mission using quadcopter platform DJI Phantom 4

*Note: Field days should be scheduled for two days with one of the days as weather backup.