"Careers are available in this new and growing field. Many potential employers can't find individuals with the skills necessary to excel in this technologically advanced area. Some education needed to prepare students will now be offered in Greenville," stated Margaret Evans, Greenville Campus Director, Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University – Worldwide. This announcement was made, last Saturday, at an Unmanned Aerial Systems (UAS) Demonstration hosted by Embry Riddle, Greenville Downtown Airport, Airwolf Aviation Services and Runway Cafe.
When people think of Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAV) most envision their highly publicized military uses, but that is just one very small part of this growing industry. At the event, video was shown and examples were given of the many civilian ways UAS can be used. They have been very helpful in emergency responses to disasters, rescue missions, firefighting, police work and public safety. Mostly by carrying photographic equipment capable of sending images back to people on the ground. These images are then used to quickly determine the safest plan of action to achieve the highest degree of success in the shortest time frame. UAS are energy efficient and battery operated so, in most cases, they are also the most cost effective and environmentally friendly option!
UAVs can help monitor endangered species, our country's borders, hard to reach utility wires and can be designed to collect weather data or provide thermal imaging. Many agricultural uses are being developed and tested. Amazon, among others, is even looking into the possibility that UAS may eventually deliver packages!
"I learned that aircraft pilots usually make great UAV operators since a lot of the training is the same," stated Michele Rash, co-owner of Airwolf Aviation Services, a local FAA Part 141 pilot training facility. "As of right now, you must hold a pilot license to fly a drone. You are able to fly into the same airspace as other aircraft so you need a private pilot license to fly them in general or a commercial license to get paid to fly them. Since UAS don't carry passengers, not even a pilot, they won't replace traditional aircraft pilots, but it does open up a whole new field for those of us interested in flight! It looks fun and interesting. Embry Riddle will even give school credit to those already holding a private pilot certificate!" added Rash.
The UAS minor, now offered in Greenville, will require classes in: Unmanned Aerial Systems and Operations; Operational and Business Aspects of Unmanned Aircraft Systems; UAS robotics; and UAS sensing systems.
Embry-Riddle also announced that a Bachelor of Science (B.S.) in UAS Science and a Master of Science (M.S.) in UAS Engineering are now offered at their Daytona Beach, FL campus. Aside from the unmanned aircraft and autonomous cars increasingly in the news, the field includes robotic surface water and underwater vessels, spacecraft and industrial robots.
Classes to Begin in Fall 2013 for Jefferson High School Students
Thirty-five teams from U.S. and international universities competed for more than $51,300 in cash prizes to fund new designs for unmanned aircraft.
Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University's first students have completed the research-based Ph.D. degree programs the university launched in 2010