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Call for Inputs – Aviation Leaders Roundtable

ASOG Members,

ASOG was invited to participate in this year’s AVBuyer Aviation Leaders Roundtable discussions on the 20th of November in the United Kingdom. The event aims to provide a platform for the exchange of views on the current Aviation Industry, which in-turn shared with government organizations. The meeting will see representatives from all aspects of Aviation: Fixed & Rotor wing Aviation, Multi Mission, Drones, Product & Services, and Associations.

In the past, General Aviation (GA) was the primary focus. However, the organizers for this year’s event want to expand discussions beyond GA and include the Aerial Work sector of Aviation (a.k.a. Special Missions, Multi-Mission, aerial remote sensing, etc.).

This event is a great opportunity for our profession to have a say at a higher level regarding the importance of Airborne Sensor Operators, how they make a difference in Aviation today and in the future, and what our profession needs concerning government regulations, standards, training, and certification.

As an Airborne Sensor Operator Group member, we would like to get your inputs on issues (both Manned and Unmanned) that you think are important to help you as an ASO to do your job safer and better, especially in the civil and public safety sector. Even though this event will have a European perspective, we believe our inputs apply to every corner of the globe (N. America, S. America, MENA, Africa, Asia, ANZ).

So, here’s your chance to make a difference. Send your thoughts and inputs to me (, and I’ll bundle them up and present them at the Roundtable. Also, please have your inputs to me no later than 18 November so I can get them organized, etc. Furthermore, I’ll provide a post report after the event so you can see what concerns aviation leaders have and feedback on your inputs.

If you have any questions, please let me know.

Thank you, everyone,


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ASOG – Global Defence Helicopter 2019

ASOG 2019 Focus Areas: Networking, Professional Development, Trending Technologies

Top Right Photo: L to R, Harry MacLeod, Patrick Ryan, Maxwell Field, Allister Wragg
Bottom Left Photo: L to R, Gustavo Duarte, Georg DeCock, Patrick Ryan

It was a great honor for ASOG and its members to participate in this year's Global Defence Helicopter meeting (Dresden, Germany, 29 -31 Oct). Per our ASOG 2019 Focus Areas, members were able to network, expand their professional knowledge, and track trending technologies. Overall, it was interesting to see the plans, programs and challenges military organizations are dealing with regarding their combat helicopter programs and how industry is trying to fulfill those requirements or mitigate the service's challenges.

Last but not least, I want to give a big thanks to Defence Leaders (Harry MacLeod, Maxwell Field) and Airborne Technologies (Gustavo Duarte) for recognizing the importance of the Airborne Sensor Operator profession and inviting us to this year’s event. Based on cross talking with Defence Leaders Directors (Harry & Max), anticipate more ASO/ASOG focused topics in their event programs. The next applicable event on their schedule that ASO’s can professionally benefit from is the Maritime Search & Rescue Conference (Tallinn, Estonia, 12 – 14 May 2020)....See details on the ASOG Event page.

ASOG Desk Editor (Patrick)

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ASOG 2019 Focus Areas: Professional Development

To stay current on the latest in aerial remote-sensing, I love to check out publications (especially free and open-source) that focus on the three domains Airborne Sensor Operators make a living in (Civil, Public Safety, Defense). One small-business open-source publication I’ve been checking-out for the last eight years is the Police Aviation News. This publication is focused primarily on police aviation but also dives into the other sectors of airborne public safety, i.e., who’s doing what, which flight departments have (or going to buy) certain aircraft/systems, etc. From my perspective, this periodical doesn’t give you the standard five-lines of information but also embeds a certain level of mature operator perspective/commentary in its information. I’m sure the editor has “Ruffled a few feathers” since its publication, but sometimes, a necessary service.

So, if you’re interested, here’s the link, walk-through the pages, and check-out the monthly magazines and special reports. Also, you can find this link in the “ASOG Link-Library”:

Police Aviation News


ASOG Desk Editor (Patrick)

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ASOG 2019 ASOG Focus Areas: Networking

It was great to finally meet Michael Sheehy in person, i.e., not via e-mails or Skype but in person. Michael was one of the first ASOG advisors to join the group and was instrumental in writing the ASOG “ASO Search and Rescue (Public Safety / Maritime / Fixed Wing) Guide” to help future generations and transitioning professionals into our career field, especially the Maritime SAR community.

Michael called me out of the blue last week and said he was in the area working on the Viking Air Guardian 400 World Demo Tour aircraft, i.e., finalizing the installation of the Sentient Vision Systems ViDAR sensor. I was able to hook-up with Michael and spend a good amount of time talking about many different topics across a wide spectrum of the ASO profession…Wow, what a great wealth of knowledge Michael has regarding the ASO profession, sensors, CONOPS, and the airborne maritime domain. If you ever have a question regarding maritime operations, send a note to Michael via ASOG messaging.

Image: L to R, Michael Sheehy and Myself


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ASOG 2019 Focus Areas: Career Support and Management

ASOGers, 2Excel just sent this new job requirement to ASOG:

“Hi guys, we’re looking for additional SOs. UK based and operating in our PA31 & King Air Special Missions Aircraft. Could you repost our job link please? We’ll be going public with an amazing SAR King Air next month, I’ll send you the details when they’re available..
Do you have experience in operating Wescam/FLIR EO/IR systems?
Would you like a rewarding role, with a great package?
We need additional Sensor Operators for a new UK based contract - full-time, part-time & contractor positions available.” (Matt Tones)

Job - Special Missions Systems Operator

If you’re interested, review their job posting and contact them directly.

ASOG Career Center

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UAV Pilot with thermal camera in JAMAICA

Dear Unmanned enthusiasts,

We ( are searching for a UAV pilot in Jamaica. He/she must have the RGB and THERMAL sensor from DJI. And we need your help on the aerial data acquisition service on a big solar site in Jamaica.

If you are interested yourself to join our worldwide pilot network to perform thermal sensor flights for the solar industry, please leave your details in this short intake sheet:

You can reach me for further questions on

Thank you.

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ASOG Focus Areas: Professional Development

ASOGers – I thought this would be a good professional development share. If you’re part of the process of deciding on what manned aircraft to acquire or modify for your aerial surveying operation or you want to have professional knowledge regarding aircraft selection, this is a good article to read. Lyndon Yorke (I was honored to meet Lyndon at InterGeo 2019, plus, he’s an ASOG member) does a good job of highlighting current factors that decision makers face and a review of the leading aircraft operating in today’s aerial remote sensing industry sector.

If you have any questions for Lyndon, look him up in the member's area.

Aerial Survey Flying - What are the Options?

AVBuyer | Lyndon Yorke | 15th January 2019

ASOG Desk Editor (Patrick)

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ASOG 2019 Focus Area: Technology Trends and Application

Maybe some of you might find this interesting. I came across this PPT briefing (see below) the other day when researching a different topic. The briefing reviews four different airborne de-mining trial projects. It’s a bit dated (1996 to 2004); however, it was interesting to see the testing process of how aerial remote sensing could support this requirement, i.e., airborne mine field detection. Speaking of dated, does anyone know if any of these projects have gone beyond test and experimental?

M. Bajic, Aerial survey for mine action: the paradigm, validation, recommendations for standardization, Workshop Inventory and analysis of operationally validated results related to mine action space -and airborne surveys, Scientific Council HCR and CTRO Ltd., Zagreb, Croatia, 30 November 2005.


ASOG Desk Editor (Patrick)

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“There’s a Gap in Aviation Safety”

ASOG 2019 Focus Areas: Advocacy

Again, big thanks to AV Buyer for helping the ASO profession and the multi-mission aviation industry do things a “little bit better.” This latest article highlights the “So What” of adding more rigor to the Airborne Sensor Operator profession. In this case, it relates to those aircrew members working a sensor/mission management system and aviation safety. You can find the article below (hyperlinked) on page 3 (one flip) in the October 2019 GA Buyer Europe magazine.

There’s a Gap in Aviation Safety – GA Buyer Europe Magazine (October 2019)

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Your link to the Geospatial World

ASOG 2019 Focus Areas: Professional Development

If you’re looking to expand your professional geospatial footprint and want to participate in an association or society in your part of the world, here’s a great website that appears to have identified and cataloged a great number of organizations from around the globe.

So, if you’re a civil aerial surveying and mapping Airborne Sensor Operator or a mil ASO wanting to transition to the civil side of aerial remote sensing, this is a very good site to help you in your professional development.

World Directory


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ASOG 2019 Focus Areas: Professional Development, Career Management, Networking (Aerial Mapping & Surveying)

If you’re an aerial mapping and surveying ASO, this event would have been a great professional opportunity (minimum - only 40 EUR for one day to walk the show). This year’s InterGeo 2019 Conference & Exposition was held at the Messe Stuttgart exhibition center in Stuttgart, Germany (17-19 Sept). If you didn’t know, InterGeo/InterAerial conference and trade fair focuses on geodesy, geoinformation, and land management. If you walked the floor(s), you would have seen the full spectrum of the commercial sector that makes up the European geospatial industry (from hardware and software developers to plenty of service providers).

Besides the full spectrum, there was a healthy level of participation by the aerial mapping and surveying sector (something that an ASO would find interesting, informative, and career enhancing - both manned and unmanned). One of the main highlights for ASOG members who attended was the launch of the European Association of Aerial Surveying Industries (EAASI). EAASI’s focus is to represent the European aerial surveying industry in all its facets. One of their working areas is education, standards, and certification, i.e., which includes Airborne Sensor Operators or Aerial Sensor Operators. If you’re interested to learn more, look at their webpage at Also, from an ASOG perspective, we might be able to help them with the depth of experience in our group…more to follow.

In addition to getting exposed to who’s who and trending technology, the event was another great opportunity for ASOG members to meet in person and share past experiences and open new opportunities. One of the great dynamics (besides having fun) that takes place when ASOG members meet at events like this is the sharing and connecting of our individual professional networks with one another which in-turn expands those networks two-fold. I want to give a big thanks to Philippe Debru, Frederic Batrelle, Bob Moll and Lyndon Yorke for taking the time to meet, walk, talk and connect with others. Plus, I enjoyed getting feedback on how to make ASOG better for themselves and our professional community.


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Object Detection

ASOG 2019 Focus Areas: Technology trends

As many of you know, ASOG is not a commercial project. When we post or share commercial white papers or press releases, it’s for the purpose of helping individual ASOs with professional development, i.e., what’s trending in the different ASO industry sectors, career management and technology, i.e., “keeping you ahead of the aircraft!”

The article below was shared by Astrid (new ASOG member) regarding trending technology. In this case, after flying many hours and collection data, turning that raw data into something that end-users can appreciate. Also, even though the article is focused on drone operations, some of the baseline points the author (Picterra) makes can apply to manned operations.

How Big is the Drone Services Market?

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Alpha, Bravo, Charlie – How Copy!

ASOG 2019 Focus Areas – Tactics, Techniques, Tips and Procedures

I know I keep saying “It’s just not a Pilot responsibility,” but I have to say it again. There’re many regulatory responsibilities, and actions pilots are required to know and conduct that Airborne Sensor Operators should have at least a working knowledge. In this case, it’s radio operations. As many of us know, radio operations are a critical part of aviation and the aerial work environment. As a professional crewmember, especially in the civil/commercial aerial remote-sensing sector, it’s important to be skilled in how to operate radios and communicating with others in the flying environment. Having this skill will maximize your utility, situational awareness and value during any flight operation.

So, if you’re new to the profession or you’ve been acting like a passenger and making your fellow crewmember the pilot fly solo, make it a point to train up. To get you started, here’s a collection of useful links that will give you a professional level of knowledge and capability to help you aviate, navigate, and communicate with your fellow crewmembers:

AOPA Radio Communications and ATC (Online Course / Free / Registration required)

Talking to Air Traffic Control | Radio Basics | ATC Communications (Video / Free)


PlaneEnglish - The Aviation Radio Simulator (App / Subscription)


ASOG Desk Editor (Patrick)

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New Publication - The Shadow Aircrew Member

I want to give a big thanks to AVBuyer for allowing ASOG to inform the aviation community of our profession. Check out their latest issue of GA Buyer Europe Magazine (September 2019, page 21) for an article highlighting the Airborne Sensor Operator profession.

The Shadow Aircrew Member - AV Buyer Europe Magazine (September 2019)


ASOG Desk Editor (Patrick)


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ASOG 2019 Focus Areas: Tactics, Techniques, Procedures, and Tips

ASOG members, I want to share some information that has been crossing my computer screen in the last month regarding aerial public safety drone operations. If you’re a public safety operator or someone just interested in airborne public safety operations and looking to get smarter on public safety drone operations, the following organizations, events, and article appear to be a good professional development source or opportunity.

As many of us know, the drone or unmanned sector is evolving as we speak regarding technology, application, and regulations. Because of this, it’s great to see organizations and individuals try to study, standardize, train and inform. As a side note, the following organizations and article are US focused. If you know of similar organizations or articles associated with your country or global region, please share.

Police Drone Program: The Chief Wants One. Now What?


DRONERESPONDERS / Public Safety Summit


APSA PUBLIC SAFETY DRONE EXPO 2019 / Educational Program


ASOG Desk Editor (Patrick)
Image Source: Jessica Lea/DFID

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ASOG 2019 Focus Areas: Trending Technology

If you’ve been tracking aviation news this month (see links below), the USAF conducted its first test of a Robot Pilot (ROBOPilot). From a manned aircraft Airborne Sensor Operator (ASO) perspective (the operator in the back of the aircraft), WHAT IF your fellow crewmember the pilot was a ROBOPilot:

• Would you fly in this configuration?

• What would be different, i.e., what would be different regarding responsibilities, CRM, managing dynamic re-taskings, emergencies etc.?

Article: Air Force Research Laboratory successfully conducts first flight of ROBOpilot Unmanned Air Platform

Video: ROBOPilot First Flight 


ASOG Desk Editor 


Image Source: AFRL

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AI Finds damages on wind turbines

ASOG 2019 Focus Areas: Technology Trends
Source: ASOG Supporter – Aero Enterprises GmbH

It’s always great to share trending technology and practices, especially from our members and Supporters. In this case it’s from one of our Supporters, Aero Enterprises. Look at their latest efforts (below) to leverage AI technology with inspecting wind turbines. If you want to know more or have any questions, you can reach out to Robert Hoermann, you’ll find him in our members network area.


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What a great time! Especially for ASOG’s first organized event. ASOG Vienna area members gathered last night to catch-up or met new faces in our profession. From an ASOG perspective, it was super to see both young and old Professionals in the aerial remote sensing industry gather in a casual setting. It was quite apparent last night members forged new professional relationships and future opportunities.

Not in stone, but the next ASOG Professional Networking Social Event will take place next month at InterGeo/InterAerial Solutions conference & exhibit in Stuttgart Germany. Currently, several members from the US, France, Austria, and the UK are planning to rendezvous. If you're attending the trade show and want to join the group for dinner after one of the show days, let me know.

Side Note: Big “thank you” to JP for organizing last night’s event!

Members R to L: Jean-Pierre (JP) Paquette; Julia Zmolnig; Benjamin Kabelik; Georg DeCock (Mr. ASOG Ambassador); Marcus Gurtner; Tanja Wimmer-Ryan; Patrick Ryan


ASOG Desk Editor (Patrick)

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