University of Hawai'i hosts first-ever drone boot camp

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The University of Hawaiʻi Applied Research Laboratory (ARL) and the Office of the Vice President of Research and Innovation hosted their first-ever drone boot camp at Les Murakami Stadium in Honolulu, Hawaii on March 30.

Approximately 100 people attended the boot camp.

Many of the people who attended the event were UAS owners, but realized that they were afraid to fly—and crash—their aircraft. So they went to the boot camp to receive expert instruction about piloting a UAS. Margo Edwards, director of ARL, says that many of the attendees told her that the boot camp was exactly what they needed. 

“As this technology pops out into the world UH personnel have the skill set to be able to respond very quickly to people who need our help and say, here’s how you do it,” Edwards says.

One of the attendees who said that they learned a lot from the boot camp was Henry Paguirigan. Paguirigan, who attended the event with his 9-year-old son, says that he purchased a UAS, but wasn’t sure how to, or where to, fly the UAS because of all the rules and regulations.

After the boot camp, though, Paguirigan says that he, and his son, are both much more confident.

During the boot camp, certified trainers provided basic instructions for operating UAS. They also provided reference materials to understand federal airspace regulations.

The event also included a UAS racing exhibition and displays of different UAS and their applications by UH Mānoa engineering laboratories, commercial vendors and federal agencies.

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