We admit that the figure does not sound note worthy on the face of it, and certainly may well not be a lot to some sUAS pilots reading this. We at AJS consider this to be a significant amount of running hours and an indicator of the reliability of the system on trial through the winter months. Oh and a wee bit of an indicator of pilot resilience to frozen thumbs.
This is us flying through winter months in flights of between 6 mins and 10 mins duration to gain valuable reliability data, and also pilot experience combinations of weather, site location, distance, height and payloads.
To date, in total, our pilot has flown 60 Flying hours (414 flights) supported by 120 flying hours on a simulator. None of our flying to date has been fully automated. There is however waypoint plotting and navigation assistance on the sUAS, but even this is pilot flown to system generated indications.
This Aerial Survey service is yet to go live for us, but we have continued to maintain pilot currency on the systems and to implement service development improvements. The aim is to improve the customer product and service delivery experience whilst improving the efficiency and therefore prove (or not) the profitability of the potential service for our company.