Returning from the AUVSI XPONENTIAL show in Dallas this week, I was struck by how quickly things can change. Once a military focused event, XPONENTIAL has quickly morphed into a showcase for commercial drone products and services. Large military technology providers have quickly re-arranged their offerings to address the coming wave of commercial opportunity.
I spent time with many thought leaders and ecosystem executives this week. They spoke of the rapid change in the market (smaller airframes, boosts in flight functionality, and enhanced data processing capabilities and applications). They also spoke of the need for regulators to move faster so as not to constrain the growth of the industry.
There are many rapidly moving parts in the emergence of this new commercial industry. A new book (April 2017), Small Unmanned Aircraft Systems Guide: Exploring Designs, Operations, Regulations, and Economics explores these moving parts and looks to be a go-to resource for those looking to or currently participating in this new space.
“Beginning with the history of UAS and ending with how to prepare for the future of this fast-paced and innovative industry, this book contains descriptions of typical sUAS architecture, related technology, common uses, and suggested safety practices, while also providing a narrative to help you determine the most appropriate path forward through complex legal, business, operational, and support considerations. Understanding how these pieces fit together, from the technical and legal perspectives, will shape your own strategy for the safe, efficient, and effective use of this “(r)evolutionary” technology.”
The book is authored by Brent A. Terwilliger, Ph.D. (Program Chair-Master of Science in Unmanned Systems at Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University) along with David C. Ison, John Robbins, and Dennis Vencenzi) and is available at Amazon for $26.97.
Additional Description from the Authors:
The utility and benefits of unmanned aircraft systems (UAS) are emerging and being recognized across the aviation industry. While this technology is not new, the ability to support domestic public and private operators is becoming better understood and opening up new uses to government organizations and commercial enterprise. Analysis of the unmanned aviation market indicates that small UAS (sUAS) will become the most prevalent and affordable form of unmanned aircraft available, featuring technology developed by contributors ranging from DIY and hobby model aircraft communities to defense contracting.
This book will help readers understand what a drone or UAS is, what forms are available (including multirotor, fixed-wing, and hybrid types), to make well-informed decisions regarding purchase and use. Readers will learn how sUAS and their various configuration options can be used to address or support evolving business needs. Ultimately, readers will have enough information to formulate a plan to acquire necessary certification approvals and operate sUAS in a safe, efficient, and effective manner.
The authors developed this book to share critical background, concepts, guidance, and lessons learned from their collective experience as researchers, operators, and academic instructors to dispel common myths and provide a starting point to explore how sUAS can be applied to solve challenges and support economic pursuits. Written for experienced aviators, as well as those new to aviation and operating in the National Airspace System (NAS). Illustrated extensively throughout, each chapter concludes with review questions for classroom and self-study use; glossary and index included. This book provides a solid foundation for keeping up with this fast moving and exciting aviation field.