What training do pilots of USGS unmanned aircraft systems receive?
Training for USGS UAS operators is provided by the Department of the Interior Office of Aviation Services. It has been approved by the Federal Aviation Administration and is specific to the types of UAS that the department operates. The training provides operators with the skills and knowledge necessary to operate a small UAS in the National Airspace System.
Small Unmanned Aircraft System Basic Operator Course: The course is modeled after training the U.S. Army provides for their Raven UAS operators. It is designed to qualify students to perform the duties of Raven A UAS pilot, mission controller, and observer.
T-Hawk Small UAS Operator Course: This course is for individuals who have previously attended a DOI sponsored Raven training course. Participation is limited to individuals who have an immediate mission need and have the approval of their bureau aviation manager.
Scientist Leanne Hanson launching an unmanned aircraft in 2014 to help with a study.
Lance Brady of the US Bureau of Land Management observes a USGS Raven unmanned aircraft in action June 20, 2012 at Lake Aldwell on the Elwha River south of Olympic National Park, Wash. USGS and BLM are cooperating on science missions to study hydrology, sedimentation, revegetation and other issues relating to the removal of two dams on the Elwha.