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California Dreaming - ASOG Networking

If you haven't been tracking the ASOG Event board , the ASOG community will be active in California over the next few weeks. HAI Heli-Expo and Aerial Firefighting Series: North America is in California.

Suppose you plan to attend this year's events and want to connect with fellow ASOGers for professional fellowship and networking. In that case, the following ASOG Members and ASOG Corporate Supporters are attending…make it a point to connect, i.e., leverage the ASOG network:

HAI Heli-Expo,

Aerial Firefighting Series: North America

For those ASOG Members who live in the Sacramento area but are not attending but want to meet up for lunch or dinner, directly message Patrick Ryan (pryan@aso-group.org). The first round of drinks is on the ASOG Association.

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12 ASO Transition Career Paths

As the adage goes…" Nothing lasts forever!" At some point, an ASO will leave the cockpit and find another means to make a living on Terra firma. When this happens, what are some of the options an ASO has when it comes to transferring their skills and knowledge?

ASOG Focus Areas | Career Management

Source | ASOG Career Center

Airborne Sensor Operators often change career paths for various reasons, such as seeking new challenges, career growth opportunities, personal interests, or changes in lifestyle preferences. Factors like technological advancements, shifts in industry demand, or organizational restructuring may also influence their decision to explore different career avenues.

As with many professions, ASOs develop unique skills and expertise that can be valuable in various career transitions. While their primary role is to operate sensors aboard aircraft for tasks like surveillance, data collection, and reconnaissance, the skills they acquire can be applied to several other careers. Here are some career options for Airborne Sensor Operators:

1. UAV (Drone) Pilot/Operator - Many of the skills and knowledge acquired as an airborne sensor operator can be transferred to operating unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) or drones. This is particularly relevant as the use of drones in various industries, including agriculture, construction, and filmmaking, continues to grow.

2. GIS Specialist (Geographic Information Systems) - Airborne Sensor Operators often work with geospatial data. Transitioning to a GIS specialist role involves using this data for mapping, spatial analysis, and decision-making in urban planning, environmental management, and disaster response.

3. Remote Sensing Specialist - Remote sensing specialists use sensor data to monitor and analyze Earth's surface and atmosphere. They work in fields like agriculture, forestry, and environmental science to assess changes and make informed decisions.

4. Data Analyst/Data Scientist - The ability to handle and process large datasets is valuable for data analysts and data scientists. Airborne Sensor Operators with strong analytical skills can transition to roles involving data analysis, predictive modeling, and data-driven decision-making.

5. Aerial Surveyor - Aerial surveyors use airborne sensors to collect data for purposes such as land surveying, construction planning, and infrastructure development. Sensor operation and data collection skills are directly transferable to this field.

6. Aircraft Dispatcher - Aircraft dispatchers play a crucial role in flight planning, monitoring aircraft movements, and ensuring safe and efficient flights. Airborne Sensor Operators with a strong understanding of aviation can transition to this role.

7. Aviation Safety Inspector - Individuals with experience in aviation safety and adherence to regulations can become aviation safety inspectors. They evaluate aircraft operations and maintenance to ensure compliance with safety standards.

8. Environmental Consultant - Environmental consultants assess the impact of projects and activities on the environment. Those with expertise in aerial data collection can provide valuable insights into environmental assessments and remediation efforts.

9. Law Enforcement Officer - Understanding surveillance and data collection techniques can benefit law enforcement careers, particularly in roles related to evidence gathering, surveillance, or cybercrime investigation.

10. Emergency Management Specialist - Emergency management specialists use data to plan and coordinate responses to natural disasters and emergencies. The ability to collect and analyze real-time data from the air can be invaluable in this field.

11. Aerospace Industry - Transitioning to roles in the aerospace industry, such as aircraft maintenance, quality control, or technical support, can be a logical step for those with a background in aviation and sensor operation.

12. Teaching/Training - Experienced Airborne Sensor Operators can share their knowledge by becoming instructors or trainers in aviation or sensor operation programs.

Summary

Transitioning to a new career may require additional education, certifications, or training, depending on the chosen field. Networking (hint, hint – ASOG!) with professionals in the desired industry and showcasing transferable skills and expertise can also be crucial for a successful career transition.

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For Sale – RIEGL VUX-240 LiDAR Sensor

ASOG Focus Area | Industry Support

Source | Emmanuel PIZZO, INFOGEO

INFOGEO is a light airborne geophysics company (drone and plane). As part of restructuring our activity, we wish to sell our LiDAR sensor - RIEGL model VUX-240.

In addition to the sensor, the sale includes:

  • RiAcquire and RiProcess software license
  • RiAcquire and RiProcess software training video series
  • Dovetail attachment to hang the sensor under a helicopter or a fixed-wing plane
  • Sensor pod that we made for integration on to our light aircraft.

Specifications

This entire package is for sale on the Aerial Survey.com platform. For further information and specifications, follow the link  "Pre-owned-equipment - Europe - VUX-240" 

For More Information

If you're interested in knowing more, don't hesitate to get in touch with me directly via the following channels:

POC - Emmanuel Pizzo

E-Mail - emmanuel.pizzo@infogeo.xyz

Phone - +33 681790915

LinkedIn - https://www.linkedin.com/company/infogeodrones/

LinkedInlinkedin.com/in/emmanuel-pizzo-87996b82   

Webpage - www.infogeo.xyz

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This month's ASOG Article of the Month is not just one article but a special focus on sensors from different authors in this month's GA Buyer magazine Aerial Work section. It's a good read regarding the basics and what is trending in passive & active aerial sensors.

ASOG Article of the Month | February 2024

Source | Astrid Ayling, ASOG Member & GA Buyer Magazine Editor

According to Astrid, to professionally stay abreast of what is trending in the world of aerial sensors or want to learn more about the kit ASOs work with every day, flip over to the following pages - pg 36-41

GA Buyer Europe – March 2024 Issue  

Besides the Aerial Work aviation section of the magazine. As an Airborne Sensor Operator aircrew member, you may find GA Buyer Magazine interesting for several professional reasons:

Industry Updates - GA Buyer Magazine provides updates and insights into the general aviation industry and the aircraft used by ASOs, including technological advancements, regulations, and market trends. As someone involved in airborne sensor operation, staying informed about the latest developments in the industry can enhance your knowledge and understanding of the field.

Product Reviews - The magazine likely features reviews of various equipment and technology relevant to airborne sensor operation, such as aircraft, sensors, aircraft modifications, and software tools. These reviews can help you make informed decisions when selecting equipment for your operations and stay up-to-date on the latest tools available.

Case Studies and Best Practices - GA Buyer Magazine may feature case studies and articles highlighting best practices in airborne sensor operation. Learning from the experiences of others in the field can provide valuable insights and help you improve your skills and techniques.

Networking Opportunities - The magazine may include advertisements, classifieds, or articles featuring industry events, conferences, and networking opportunities. Engaging with other professionals in the field can expand your network, provide learning opportunities, and potentially lead to new career opportunities or collaborations.

Inspiration and Motivation - Reading about successful projects, innovative technologies, and the achievements of other professionals in the industry can be inspiring and motivating. It can encourage you to continue advancing your career and exploring new opportunities within airborne sensor operation.

Overall, GA Buyer Magazine or other magazines like it can serve as a valuable resource for staying informed, connected, and inspired within the General & Aerial Work Aviation industries, particularly for professionals like yourself involved in airborne sensor operations.

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New ASOG Corporate Supporter - INFOGEO

ASOG 2024 Focus Area | Industry Support

Source | ASOG Desk Editor

If you're looking for a company to help you with your geophysical and topographic data needs, our new ASOG Corporate Support might be your right partner. INFOGEO just joined the outstanding business community that proudly recognizes the Airborne Sensor Operator profession and the mission of ASOG.

According to Emmanuel Pizzo, Director and founder of INFOGEO, "INFOGEO acquires, processes and analyzes geophysical and topographic data, acquired by air (drone and light aircraft) or on the ground for all projects related to the energy sector.

Whether our client's project is to set up ground-based solar or wind power plants, to produce mineral resources (such as critical metals, industrial minerals, or noble gases such as helium) or energy resources (such as geothermal or hydrogen) contained underground, or to build geological storage sites, INFOGEO will be able to offer the exploration data that suits anyone's needs in France and abroad through our DATA 4 EXPLORER solutions."

To learn more about INFOGEO and its services and solutions, check them out on the ASOG Corporate Supporter page (clicking their Logo).

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Innovative Police Surveillance Technologies

Building on the previous post regarding advanced aerial surveillance, let's shift our focus to the future of law enforcement surveillance, delving into the role that artificial intelligence plays for law enforcement and aerial surveillance – making the most effective use of a valuable resource.

The increase in the use of surveillance technology by law enforcement 

For decades, police forces worldwide have deployed high-tech surveillance equipment to help them do just that by identifying and tracking suspects’ movements, gathering evidence that can be admissible in court, and preventing areas from becoming ‘no-go’ crime spots.  

The development of increasingly complex law enforcement surveillance technology has resulted in modern, highly mobile and adaptable police services customised to tackle the specific problems they encounter in their location. Whether they are operating in a rural or urban landscape, police surveillance technology needs to be adaptable and able to gather information quickly and easily without impeding the rights of innocent civilians.  

Law enforcement surveillance – a major business sector 

Much of the development of law enforcement surveillance technology doesn’t happen ‘in-house’. Instead, businesses that specifically work in this sector carry out extensive R&D, often working in partnership with the police and law enforcement bodies.  

Every year, large conferences and exhibitions showcase the best new ideas. Some, such as Segways with rifle mounts, are clearly destined for the scrap heap. However, other ideas, such as advanced biometrics, drone technology and software applications like Augmented Reality, are far more practical.  

In the case of software, immediate integration is possible without the need for new hardware, keeping operating costs down. It also utilises hardware that operators are already familiar with, so training time is cut to a minimum. 

Does it work? Chasing down the criminals 

The simple answer is yes. Without surveillance, police forces would be effectively ‘working blind’. Surveillance and intelligence gathering form the backbone of any criminal investigation, whether that’s a high-risk target such as a terrorist organisation or a low-level protest organisation. Surveillance is an irreplaceable aspect of law enforcement on every level. 

However, there is always a caveat to surveillance and intelligence gathering, and that’s just how far do you go. The reason so many governments have enforced legislative boundaries regarding surveillance is to ensure that the rights of innocent individuals are protected. However, as electronic surveillance has continued to become more and more advanced, that legislation may need to be examined in more detail. 

The ethics of data collection have to be weighed against the effectiveness of the investigation itself. The public is already wary of ‘Big Brother’ surveillance techniques as used by some regimes. So, it is imperative that new surveillance technology does nothing to inflame this mistrust but instead uses more finely tuned targeting to hone in on the real perpetrators. In short, the ‘background noise’ of the innocent population needs to be filtered out. And that’s where the latest surveillance technology comes into its own. 

CCTV – the bedrock of police surveillance

With limited resources, it is physically impossible for law enforcement agencies to have a police officer on every street corner. What they can have, however, is a camera. Easy to install, reliable, and operated remotely from a central location, CCTV cameras are commonplace in every town, village and street across the globe.  

CCTV technology produces better cameras that deliver high-definition images, even at night. Multi-spectrum cameras can quite literally see in the dark, while the use of colour imaging produces far clearer results during the day.  

Their reliability and accuracy mean that CCTV cameras will continue to be a significant factor in future police surveillance operations. The increased use of police mobile surveillance cameras also adds to the coverage that CCTV provides through airborne cameras, drones (more on that shortly), and 4K body cams.  

In fluid scenarios (such as when a large crowd is expected to gather), mobile surveillance trailers that utilise solar panels to power the cameras are increasingly used in some parts of the world. In colder climates, it may not be as practical. But in the Middle East and some parts of the USA, for example, solar trailers are a viable tool in crowd control surveillance at large events or demonstrations.  

These mobile units can also be used in traffic scenarios and integrated with advanced licence-plate recognition software to identify target vehicles or those that are not insured. Rather than being simply ‘revenue generators’, these roadside units ensure that dangerous and unroadworthy vehicles or banned drivers can be taken off the road, protecting other motorists. 

Drones – eyes in the sky  

Drones are increasingly used by police and law enforcement operators. Drones or ‘Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAVs) are an ideal piece of technology for a wide range of applications, including crowd monitoring, aerial reconnaissance, search and rescue and crime scene work. Because of their compact size and manoeuvrability, they can get into positions that a larger airborne unit like a helicopter couldn’t.  

New developments in drone technology include units that can be powered up and operated remotely, much like the larger military versions currently deployed in many conflict areas. Image stabilisation software ensures clear, sharp results. Some more sophisticated drones carry additional technology, such as 3D mapping and geospatial software for greater precision or thermal imaging that can assist in search and rescue operations in particular. 

The only issue with drones that needs to be addressed to make them more effective is a longer battery life. Currently, small drones can only stay in the air for minutes rather than hours. While it is possible to set up a ‘relay’ of drones for extended periods, battery technology does need to advance to make them more effective as surveillance equipment. 

AI – its role in law enforcement surveillance 

The biggest technological advance in the past couple of years, not just in law enforcement but generally, has been AI. Artificial Intelligence is permeating every aspect of modern life. While it has its flaws (as any 1.0 version of a tech advance will), it does have enormous potential to work alongside human operators, especially in surveillance scenarios. 

Until the bugs have been ironed out of AI, though, there are limitations as to its uses in police surveillance operations. Where it can assist is in the analysis of the remarkable amounts of data now being collected.  

Using AI (alongside human operators) to sift through this data reduces the amount of time and money it costs to process information gathered by surveillance units. Machine learning means that AI can adapt and refine its process. Applications include facial recognition (still a contentious issue in many parts of the world), crime mapping to identify high-crime areas, and biometrics such as gait recognition.  

AI is also at the cutting edge of ‘crime forecasting’. By using deep learning algorithms, AI can be programmed to analyse data from multiple sources to predict where crimes may occur. While this does sound a little too close to the plot of the film ‘Minority Report’, predictive surveillance has been used by law enforcement operators ever since the first policemen hit the streets. The only difference now is that the volume of data being sifted through to make these predictions is far greater. This, in turn, makes the results more accurate.  

The use of 5G in surveillance technology 

With many countries switching off their 3G networks and relying purely on 4 and 5G instead, the greater coverage that these stronger signals provide allows advanced surveillance technology to operate more effectively. 5G makes wireless video surveillance more accessible for use in remote locations and allows more devices to connect to a single network. 5G will allow advanced surveillance technology to penetrate new and more diverse markets, as well as drive forward the development of new equipment.

Airborne surveillance – making the best use of an expensive resource 

Airborne surveillance plays an ever-increasing role in law enforcement. While low-level operations are being replaced in many cases by police surveillance drones, airborne units are ideal for covering a larger target area or relaying information to ground units in the event of a chase.  

Helicopters are expensive to run, so making the best use of this costly resource is essential. They’re also limited when it comes to cabin space, so any advances in surveillance equipment have to be compact, effective, and intuitive.  

Fortunately, new technology developed by companies such as FlySight makes this a reality through Augmented Reality. 

FlySight produces a range of turnkey solutions for surveillance operators, including geospatial software and augmented reality, to optimise efficiency and make the most of flight time. This software grandfathers straight onto familiar hardware, reducing the time it takes operators to learn their way around the intuitive system.  

OPENSIGHT is a multi-platform processing, exploitation and dissemination (PED) system that integrates geospatial layers to enhance visual representation. Using modular plug-ins, simultaneous GIS and 3D graphics rendering, it provides operators with crucial information at a glance.  

The AR system can also use machine learning to identify and follow specific target vehicles, effectively filtering out the background noise and allowing the operator to focus on a specific target. It also has a role in monitoring large crowds, surveilling both urban and rural locations, and identifying targets in search and rescue operations. 

OPENSIGHT has been developed in accordance with STANAG guidelines and rules and is fully customisable.  

It is this next-level R&D that is helping police surveillance technology become more efficient and more effective at reducing crime and preventing it in the first place. AR, in particular, represents the future of modern police surveillance. 

Find out more about OPENSIGHT here.

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As an ASO, What do You Advocate?

As the President of the Airborne Sensor Operators Group (ASOG) Association, I'm frequently asked what ASOG stands for or Advocate! So, with that, this is my answer.

ASOG Focus Area | Standards & Advocacy

Source | Patrick Ryan

The Airborne Sensor Operators Group (ASOG), a non-profit professional international aircrew association, advocates for several key initiatives aimed at enhancing aviation safety, sensor operations, career management support, and industry support within the airborne sensor operator profession:

Aviation Safety:

  • ASOG prioritizes the promotion of stringent safety protocols and adherence to aviation regulations among airborne sensor operators.
  • The association advocates for continuous training and certification programs to ensure operators possess the necessary skills and knowledge to operate safely in diverse environments.
  • ASOG collaborates with regulatory bodies and industry stakeholders to develop and implement best practices for mitigating risks associated with airborne sensor operations.

Sensor Operations Enhancement:

  • ASOG strives to support advancing sensor technologies and operational techniques to improve data collection efficiency, accuracy, and reliability.
  • The association supports or provides educational resources, workshops, and knowledge-sharing platforms to enhance the skills and expertise of sensor operators.
  • ASOG fosters collaboration and innovation among operators to drive continuous improvement in sensor operations and data analysis methodologies.

Career Management Support:

  • ASOG is committed to supporting airborne sensor operators' professional development and career advancement.
  • The association promotes mentorship programs, career guidance, and networking opportunities to help operators navigate their career paths.
  • ASOG advocates for standardized career pathways, recognition, and fair compensation within the aviation industry to ensure the profession's sustainability.

Industry Support and Collaboration:

  • ASOG works closely with industry partners to address workforce shortages, equipment maintenance, and regulatory compliance challenges.
  • The association advocates for policies and initiatives that promote a supportive and conducive environment for airborne sensor operators within the industry.
  • ASOG serves as a unified voice for sensor operators in industry discussions, lobbying efforts, and policy-making processes to advocate for their interests and promote industry-wide collaboration.

To sum it up, ASOG's advocacy efforts aim to elevate Airborne Sensor Operators' professionalism, safety, and effectiveness while supporting the career development and industry integration of sensor operators worldwide. Through collaboration, education, and advocacy, ASOG strives to strengthen the ASO community and contribute to the advancement of the aviation industry as a whole.

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The term ‘surveillance’ has a lot of connotations for the general public. Today, we have digital ‘eyes and ears’ to gather information, and modern surveillance technology is part of everyday life.  

From biometric systems to allow access to computers, laptops or phones to high-level security surveillance enhanced with Augmented Reality and AI, almost every part of our lives is digitally monitored in some way, even if we’re just walking down the high street. 

So, we have a self-perpetuating situation where more surveillance becomes necessary to protect the public and society’s infrastructure. But where is all this going? And as the dawn breaks on a world where AI is becoming increasingly prevalent, what direction will advanced surveillance take over the next few years? 

In this article, we’ll briefly look at the statistics of surveillance before examining the various types of technology used. We’ll also look at new developments, such as Augmented Reality, and address the big question regarding AI.  

How commercially important is advanced surveillance? 

The simple answer is very important. Data published by Statistica Research Department in December 2023 estimated that global surveillance technology in 2022 was valued at over US$130 billion and is expected to exceed US$148 billion in 2023. By 2027, the statistics show a massive growth in the financial viability of global surveillance, potentially topping around US$235 billion.  

Those numbers are massive and demonstrate quite clearly that surveillance is a hugely profitable business. But why is it worth so much? Well, when you consider that analysis by SRD into the scale of significant data breaches worldwide shows levels that impact almost everyone on the planet several times over, it is understandable why advanced surveillance is so necessary. 

But what about ‘real world’ surveillance as opposed to digital surveillance? As more conflicts escalate and criminal issues such as drug and people trafficking escalate, airborne surveillance combined with satellite imaging becomes ever more critical to military and law enforcement operators. Drones have become the latest weapon in this aerial battle, and thanks to considerable advances in multi-spectral imaging, real-time data analysis and a host of other elements, positive results are being reported in deployments around the world.  

Different types of surveillance 

As we move into 2024, several streams of advanced surveillance are coming online. While systems such as live video monitoring and managed video surveillance still have a significant role to play, they are being augmented by a raft of new technologiesLet’s look at each of these and how they factor into next-generation surveillance techniques. 

Live video monitoring and managed video surveillance 

At its most basic level, managed video surveillance is the bedrock of most surveillance systems. While it can’t justifiably be classified as an ‘advanced’ system, it is intrinsically linked to more up-to-date techniques. The skills acquired by operators using these systems are transferrable, and the level of detail captured by modern multi-spectral cameras far outweighs the grainy, poorly defined pictures of old. 

Live video monitoring, however, requires a whole other level of skill, and in recent years, we’ve seen live video monitoring being augmented by AI and complex algorithms. Because advanced surveillance systems capture so much information, the trick is to ‘filter out’ the background noise and focus on the relevant information.  

But rather than relying purely on AI, human interaction is also a factor, allowing experts to have the final say on interpreting the data captured. That human element is vital in a law enforcement or military field of operation. 

The IoT – utilising a whole new network for surveillance

The Internet of Things brings with it a new opportunity to utilise different platforms for surveillance. In 2024, experts predict that the groundwork laid down over the last couple of years will allow the IoT to play a more significant role in advanced surveillance technology. Integrating video surveillance with different IoT devices will enable comprehensive and specialist systems to be set up, including anything from temperature and movement sensors to access control systems. 

Predictive Analytics and big data collation 

While predictive analytics has been used in business modelling for some time, using machine learning to identify risks and statistically interpret data can be grandfathered over to the security industry. Thanks to cloud-based storage systems, massive amounts of big data can be collected and stored, providing instant access to that data for analysts anywhere in the world.  

This works particularly well with aerial surveillance and satellite imaging, where the data can be immediately sent to a ground-based centre for interpretation. By incorporating predictive analytics into the equation, that data can be sifted and analysed efficiently while maintaining the human element.

Enhanced authentication

As anyone with a Social Media account or who browses YouTube will know, there are a lot of fake videos out there. AI may have a positive role to play in advanced surveillance technology (more on that shortly), but it can also be used to manipulate video footage, calling into question the authenticity and accuracy of the content.  

Advanced validation is in greater demand as we move forward, especially if the video being presented is to be used in a law enforcement situation or as part of military intelligence gathering. Authentication isn’t just a matter of ‘ticking all the squares with a picture of a traffic light in them’ anymore. Advanced surveillance will require frame-by-frame authentication to ensure that a video capture is genuine. Expect this to be an area of considerable development in the coming months and years. 

The use of 5G in surveillance technology 

With many countries switching off their 3G networks and relying purely on 4 and 5G instead, the greater coverage that these stronger signals provide allows advanced surveillance technology to operate more effectively. 5G makes wireless video surveillance more accessible for use in remote locations and allows more devices to connect to a single network. 5G will allow advanced surveillance technology to penetrate new and more diverse markets, as well as drive forward the development of new equipment.

The big question: is AI really a good surveillance tool? 

AI has had a bit of a shaky year in 2023. Its integration into the Internet and the Metaverse, particularly, has met with considerable resistance. Many users think it isn’t ready to work as an effective tool, particularly when rendering images and content. However, as already mentioned, AI most certainly has a place in the surveillance industry. Its ability to analyse data and filter out extraneous and irrelevant information is not in question.  

But AI still has a long way to go before it can be used as an autonomous system without human intervention. Regulation and legislation are still needed to ensure that AI-based surveillance tech doesn’t contravene myriad human rights legislation and anti-privacy laws, for example.  

On the positive side, though, is the fact that AI has unlimited possibilities and can be integrated into technology as a System-on-Chip, which will allow it to optimise a wide range of video surveillance systems. It can potentially improve everything from analytics to image quality in all of the bandwidths and can be interlinked into multi-layered systems both on the ground and in the air.  

Augmented Reality – tried and tested technology 

While AI is still taking somewhat tentative steps into advanced surveillance, one system has already been tried and tested in the field – Augmented Reality. Layers of AR can be added to a surveillance system that overlays essential information on top of topographical mapping and multi-spectral software. This is of particular use for airborne surveillance units and can help them easily navigate an unfamiliar landscape.  

AR can also help to identify and track individual targets with exceptional accuracy, making the validity of AR’s real-world applications in surveillance situations unquestioned. 

The next level of biometric surveillance 

We briefly mentioned biometrics earlier, but experts believe that 2024 will see a considerable level of advancement in this particular field. Facial recognition has already been through the mill. It has been challenged in the UK and the USA for its accuracy (which is particularly poor when it comes to identifying and distinguishing POC subjects).  

So, while facial recognition undergoes a bit of a rethink, biometrics has advanced in other areas that can help surveillance operators identify and isolate individuals during an operation. One of the most significant developments has been in behavioural biometrics, where individuals can be identified by their behaviour or movement patterns.  

So far, the most successful has been ‘gait recognition’, which identifies an individual by how they walk. Currently being trialled by the Chinese police, the system relies on video surveillance footage and an algorithm to analyse how a person moves as they walk. If facial recognition becomes subject to prohibitive legislation, gait recognition may be the next major biometric surveillance system to emerge.  

FlySight – leading the way in surveillance tech

The different aspects of advanced surveillance applications are exciting for airborne surveillance systems. With the increased use of miniaturisation and drones in aerial surveillance operations, capabilities such as gait recognition and other biometric applications, AI, and predictive analytics can be easily integrated into existing systems. As these are intuitive and utilise equipment already familiar to the operator, advanced surveillance systems can come onstream almost immediately. 

At FlySight, we constantly innovate and develop geospatial software solutions for mission-critical operations for a wide range of clients. Our OPENSIGHT system offers development tools, turnkey solutions and plugins useful in the latest advanced surveillance systems. Using everything from Augmented Reality systems to multi-platform PED systems, we can provide our clients with surveillance systems that integrate geo-exploitation toolboxes and mission data analysis software.  

We feel that 2024 will be an exciting year for the development of advanced surveillance technologies and that, thanks to advances such as 5G integration and wireless surveillance systems, more and more organisations will see the benefits of including advanced surveillance tech in their operations. 

To learn more about OPENSIGHT browse our Resources section.

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As an ASO, you might find yourself reading a checklist to your pilot in command (manned & unmanned aircraft). If this happens, have no fear; there are some simple things you can do to be a valuable asset in the cockpit or the Mission Control Unit (MCU)

ASOG Focus Area | Training & Education

Source | ASOG Training Center

Reading the checklist to the pilot in command (PIC) ensures a safe and efficient flight operation. Here are some tips for Airborne Sensor Operators or other non-rated aircrew members:

Top 10 Tips

  1. Familiarize Yourself with the Checklist - Ensure you are familiar with the aircraft's checklist before the flight. Understand each item and its purpose.

 

  1. Use Clear and Concise Communication - When reading the checklist, speak clearly and use concise language. Avoid jargon or ambiguous terms, i.e., use Aviation English.

 

  1. Confirm Each Step - After reading each item, wait for confirmation from the pilot in command before moving on to the next item. This ensures that both of you are on the same page.

 

  1. Read Slowly and Deliberately - Take your time when reading the checklist. Rushing through it can lead to errors or omissions.

 

  1. Cross-Check - While you read the checklist, the pilot in command should cross-check each item visually or refer to the cockpit instruments. This helps in verifying that tasks are completed correctly.

 

  1. Be Prepared for Changes - Sometimes, the pilot in command may need to deviate from the standard checklist due to specific circumstances. Be flexible and ready to adapt to such changes.

 

  1. Stay Focused - Maintain your focus solely on the checklist during this time. Avoid distractions and ensure your full attention is on the task at hand.

 

  1. Use Challenge and Response Format - Many checklists are designed in a challenge and response format. As the co-pilot, you issue the challenge, and the pilot in command responds with the action taken. Stick to this format for clarity and consistency.

 

  1. Seek Clarification if Needed - If you're unsure about any item on the checklist or if something seems amiss, don't hesitate to seek clarification from the pilot in command or refer to the aircraft's operating manual.

 

  1. Review and Debrief - After completing the checklist, take a moment to review the actions taken and discuss any issues or concerns with the pilot in command. This debriefing helps in continuous improvement and enhances safety for future flights.

Summary

By following these tips, an ASO can effectively assist the pilot in command in executing the pre-flight, in-flight, and post-flight procedures, contributing to the overall safety and efficiency of the flight operation. At the same time, promoting standardization, compliance, collaboration, and error prevention.

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Do you know what to do during an Inflight Emergency if you're a non-rated aircrew member? The following are time-test best practices.

ASOG Focus Area | Aviation Safety

Source | ASOG Safety Center

In the high-stakes aviation environment, the airborne sensor operator (ASO) is pivotal in ensuring a flight mission's safety and success. When faced with an in-flight emergency, the actions taken by the ASO can be instrumental in assisting the pilot and other aircrew members in navigating through challenges and swiftly implementing effective solutions.

From immediate communication strategies to meticulous system monitoring and collaboration in decision-making, the ASO's responsibilities extend beyond sensor operation to encompass a critical support role that contributes to the overall operational resilience of the aircraft and its crew.

The following points delve into the essential actions an airborne sensor operator should undertake during an emergency, focusing on their pivotal contributions to maintaining situational awareness, troubleshooting technical issues, and fostering seamless coordination within the aircrew.

Critical Steps

In-flight emergencies can vary widely, and the actions taken by an airborne sensor operator (ASO) will depend on the nature of the emergency and the aircraft involved. However, here are some general steps that an ASO might take to assist the pilot and other aircrew members during an emergency:

Immediate Communication - Quickly inform the pilot and other aircrew members about the nature of the emergency. Use established communication procedures and channels to relay information.

Assist with Troubleshooting - If the emergency involves sensor or communication systems, assist in troubleshooting and resolving technical issues. Provide information to the pilot about the status of critical systems.

Emergency Procedures Review - Follow established emergency procedures and checklists. Assist the pilot in carrying out emergency procedures as necessary.

Monitoring Systems - Continue monitoring sensor data and other relevant systems. Provide real-time information to the pilot regarding any changes or developments related to the emergency.

Navigation Assistance - Assist with navigation if necessary, especially if there are issues with the aircraft's navigation systems.

Coordination with Other Crew Members - Coordinate actions with other crew members to ensure a cohesive and organized response to the emergency.

Emergency Equipment Operation - If applicable, operate emergency equipment such as fire extinguishers or emergency communication devices as per established procedures.

Maintain Situational Awareness - Keep a constant awareness of the overall situation, providing relevant information to the pilot to aid decision-making.

Prepare for Emergency Landing or Egress - If the situation requires, assist in preparations for an emergency landing or egress from the aircraft.

Follow Orders from the Pilot - Follow the pilot's instructions promptly and efficiently.

It's important to note that specific procedures may vary based on the aircraft type, the mission, and the nature of the emergency. Additionally, crew coordination and effective communication are crucial in managing in-flight emergencies. Training and regular drills help ensure the crew can respond effectively to various emergency scenarios.

First Four Actions

An airborne sensor operator (ASO) is critical in assisting the pilot and other aircrew members during an in-flight emergency. While the specific actions may depend on the nature of the emergency and the aircraft involved, here are four general first actions an ASO might take:

1. Immediate Communication - The first and foremost action is to immediately communicate the nature of the emergency to the pilot and other aircrew members. Use the aircraft's communication systems to relay important information. Maintain clear and concise communication to ensure that everyone is aware of the situation.

2. System Monitoring and Diagnosis - Begin monitoring relevant sensor data and other critical systems. Assist the pilot in diagnosing the issue by providing information about the status of sensors and associated systems. Collaborate with other crew members to identify the root cause of the emergency.

3. Follow Emergency Procedures - Refer to established emergency procedures and checklists for the specific type of emergency. Work with the pilot to systematically review the emergency checklist and take appropriate actions to address the situation. Ensure all necessary steps are taken to mitigate the emergency and stabilize the aircraft.

4. Assist in Decision-Making - Provide real-time information to the pilot regarding the status of sensors, systems, and other relevant data. Collaborate with the pilot in making informed decisions about the course of action, considering available options and potential consequences. If applicable, assist in navigating the aircraft to a safe altitude, location, or landing site.

These initial actions aim to establish clear communication, gather critical information, and begin addressing the emergency. The ASO's role is to support the pilot by providing valuable input and assistance, particularly in managing sensors and systems related to the mission objectives. As the situation unfolds, the ASO will continue collaborating with the pilot and other crew members to ensure a coordinated and effective response.

Summary

Again, in the high-stakes aviation environment, the airborne sensor operator (ASO) is pivotal in ensuring a flight mission's safety and success. When faced with an in-flight emergency, the actions taken by the ASO can be instrumental in assisting the pilot and other aircrew members in navigating through challenges and swiftly implementing effective solutions.

Read more…

How to Analyze an Aircrew Job Description

ASOG Focus Area | Career Management

Source | ASOG Career Center

Analyzing an aircrew job description is essential if you're considering a career in aviation or the aerial remote-sensing sector. A thorough analysis helps you understand the requirements, responsibilities, and qualifications needed for the position.

10 Steps

Here's a step-by-step guide on how to analyze an aircrew job description:

Step 1 - Read the Job Description Carefully: Start by reading the entire job description thoroughly to gain a complete understanding of the role. Pay attention to details and take notes as you go.

Step 2 - Identify Key Components: Break down the job description into its key components, which typically include:

  • Job title
  • Job summary or purpose
  • Key responsibilities
  • Qualifications and requirements
  • Reporting structure
  • Location and working conditions
  • Company/organization information

Step 3 - Job Title and Summary: Understand the job title and summary or purpose. This provides an overview of the position and its primary objectives.

Step 4 - Key Responsibilities: Examine the list of key responsibilities. These are the tasks and duties the aircrew member will be expected to perform. Look for details such as:

  • Flight duties and responsibilities
  • Safety and emergency procedures
  • Passenger or cargo handling
  • Navigation and communication tasks
  • Maintenance responsibilities (if applicable)

Step 5 - Qualifications and Requirements: Review the qualifications and requirements section. This outlines the qualifications, skills, and experience needed for the role. Standard requirements for aircrew positions include:

  • Education level (e.g., high school diploma, bachelor's degree)
  • Pilot's license or certification
  • Flight hours and experience
  • Physical fitness requirements
  • Language proficiency (especially in multi-crew environments)
  • Security clearances
  • Specific aircraft type ratings (if applicable)

Step 6 - Special Skills and Competencies: Identify any special skills or competencies required, such as:

  • Knowledge of aviation regulations and procedures
  • Proficiency in using aviation equipment and technology
  • Teamwork and communication skills
  • Leadership abilities (for senior positions)
  • Problem-solving and decision-making skills

Step 7 - Company/Organization Information: Understand the company or organization's background and mission. Familiarize yourself with its culture, values, and goals to assess if they align with your career aspirations.

Step 8 - Considerations: Keep in mind other factors that may be important to you, such as:

  • Compensation and benefits
  • Work schedule and flexibility
  • Career advancement opportunities
  • Location and travel requirements
  • Company reputation and safety record

Step 9 - Compare and Contrast: If you evaluate multiple aircrew job descriptions, compare and contrast them to identify similarities and differences. This can help you decide which positions align best with your skills and career goals.

Step 10 - Seek Clarification: If you have questions or need clarification on any aspect of the job description, contact the hiring manager or HR department for more information.

Summary

The bottom line is – that analyzing an aircrew job description is a crucial step in the job search process, as it helps you determine if a particular position is the right fit for your qualifications and career aspirations.

Read more…

ASOG Focus Area | Industry Support

Source | Astrid Ayling, GA Buyer Magazine

Call For Promotional Content

Does your firm design and build aerial remote sensors or technology that supports Aerial Sensors? GA Buyer Europe Magazine's March issue will focus on Aerial Work aviation sensors, i.e., Aerial Sensors – The Game Changer of Aerial Work Aviation.

If you want to add content and text to advertise your product along with this theme, contact Astrid Ayling at GA Buyer Magazine (astrid@avbuyer.com)

The deadline for submission is 6 February 2024.

 

GA Buyer Europe Magazine

Read more…

In the dynamic and high-stakes realm of aircrew operations, the ability to navigate complex scenarios with precision and efficiency is paramount. At the heart of this operational finesse lies a strategic approach that aircrews employ - one that involves the art of prioritizing and compartmentalizing.

ASOG Focus Area | Training & Education

Source | ASOG Training Center

In the fast-paced and ever-changing environment of aviation, mastering the skill of discerning priorities and effectively compartmentalizing tasks is not just a necessity; it is the cornerstone of successful mission execution. This article delves into the intricate world of aircrew or ASO strategy, exploring how the deliberate organization of tasks and priorities contributes to the overall safety, success, and mission accomplishment of aircrew professionals.

Basic 101

Prioritizing and compartmentalizing are two strategies that complement each other in managing tasks and responsibilities effectively.

Prioritizing involves identifying tasks or goals based on their importance, urgency, or impact. It helps in allocating time and resources to the most crucial activities, ensuring they receive adequate attention.

Compartmentalizing, on the other hand, involves mentally or physically separating different aspects of your life or tasks into distinct compartments or categories. This separation helps in focusing on one thing at a time, reducing distractions, and preventing one area from overwhelming or interfering with another.

When used together, prioritizing and compartmentalizing create a structured approach to managing various responsibilities:

Setting Priorities within Compartments: Each compartment or category might contain multiple tasks or goals. Prioritizing within these compartments allows you to determine which tasks are most important or time-sensitive within each area.

Focus and Concentration: Compartmentalizing enables you to concentrate on one task or area at a time without being mentally burdened by other responsibilities. Prioritizing helps ensure that the most critical tasks within each compartment receive attention first.

Efficient Time Management: By prioritizing tasks within each compartment, you allocate your time and energy efficiently. This prevents you from getting sidetracked by less important tasks while ensuring that the most crucial ones are addressed promptly.

Reducing Overwhelm: Compartmentalizing prevents the feeling of being overwhelmed by a large workload or multiple responsibilities. Prioritizing within these compartments guides you in handling them systematically.

Adaptability: As priorities can change, the ability to re-prioritize within each compartment allows for adaptability. You can shift focus or resources based on changing circumstances while still maintaining a structured approach.

Overall, prioritizing and compartmentalizing work in tandem to help individuals stay organized, focused, and effective in managing their tasks and responsibilities.

Aircrew

As an aircrew member, compartmentalizing and prioritizing are crucial for ensuring safety, efficiency, and effectiveness during flights. Here's how you might approach it:

Safety First: Safety is the top priority in aviation. Before anything else, you prioritize safety procedures, pre-flight checks, and adherence to protocols. This includes assessing weather conditions, inspecting the aircraft, and ensuring all safety equipment is in place.

Flight Planning and Procedures: Compartmentalize your tasks related to flight planning, including reviewing the flight plan, coordinating with the crew, confirming routes, fuel calculations, and checking for any relevant updates or notices.

Emergency Preparedness: Prioritize knowledge and readiness for emergency procedures. This involves mental preparedness, understanding emergency protocols, and being ready to address any unexpected situations that may arise during the flight.

Passenger Service and Comfort: If your role involves passenger interaction, compartmentalize tasks related to passenger service, ensuring their comfort and safety while balancing it with your primary responsibilities.

Communication and Navigation: Prioritize effective communication with air traffic control, crew members, and relevant authorities. Compartmentalize tasks related to navigation, such as staying on course, monitoring altitude, speed, and other critical flight parameters.

In-flight Situational Awareness: Continuously compartmentalize your attention to maintain situational awareness. Keep an eye on instruments, monitor systems, and stay alert to any changes in conditions or unexpected events.

Post-Flight Procedures: After landing, prioritize post-flight procedures such as securing the aircraft, debriefing with the crew, and ensuring any necessary reports or documentation are completed.

Continuous Learning and Training: Allocate time outside of flights for ongoing training, staying updated on new procedures, regulations, or technological advancements in aviation.

By dividing your responsibilities into these compartments and prioritizing within each, you can effectively manage the multitude of tasks involved in aircrew duties while ensuring safety, adherence to protocols, and a smooth flight experience.

Airborne Sensor Operator

As an airborne sensor operator, your role involves managing complex equipment and monitoring data during flight operations. Compartmentalizing and prioritizing are essential to handle the myriad tasks involved. Here's how you might approach it:

Pre-Flight Preparation: Prioritize pre-flight checks and equipment setup. Ensure all sensors, cameras, or monitoring devices are functioning correctly. This involves checking calibration, power sources, and connectivity.

Mission-Specific Objectives: Compartmentalize tasks based on the specific mission objectives. Prioritize understanding the mission parameters, target areas, or data requirements outlined by your team or mission commander.

Sensor Operation: During the flight, prioritize the operation of sensors or equipment. This includes monitoring displays, collecting data, adjusting settings for optimal readings, and ensuring the quality of information being gathered.

Communication and Collaboration: Prioritize communication with the flight crew, mission commander, or ground personnel. Effectively relay information about sensor data, respond to requests, and collaborate to ensure mission success.

Data Analysis and Reporting: Compartmentalize tasks related to real-time data analysis. Prioritize identifying relevant information, interpreting sensor data, and providing timely reports or insights to support mission objectives.

Adaptability and Troubleshooting: Be prepared to compartmentalize troubleshooting tasks if any technical issues arise with the sensors or equipment. Prioritize quick and effective resolution to minimize disruptions to the mission.

Situational Awareness: Continuously compartmentalize your attention to maintain situational awareness regarding the aircraft's position, environmental conditions, and any potential hazards that may affect sensor operations.

Post-Mission Procedures: After the mission, prioritize post-mission procedures such as data backup, equipment shutdown, and debriefing sessions to discuss observations or issues encountered during the flight.

Continuous Training and Skill Development: Allocate time for continuous learning to stay updated on new sensor technologies, data analysis techniques, and evolving operational procedures.

By compartmentalizing tasks according to these aspects of your role and then prioritizing within each compartment, you can effectively manage the complex responsibilities of an airborne sensor operator, ensuring accurate data collection and mission success.

Summary

Without a doubt, the symbiotic relationship between aircrew and airborne sensor operators underscores the critical importance of prioritizing and compartmentalizing in the realm of aerial operations. As we've delved into the intricacies of their strategic approach, it becomes evident that the seamless coordination between these professionals hinges on their collective ability to discern priorities and compartmentalize tasks effectively.

This dynamic strategy not only optimizes mission success but also elevates the overall safety and efficiency of airborne endeavors. In the ever-evolving landscape of airborne operations, where the fusion of technology and human expertise is paramount, the strategic synergy between aircrew and sensor operators stands as a testament to the pivotal role played by prioritization and compartmentalization in the accomplishment of complex aerial missions. As they navigate the skies with precision and purpose, these professionals exemplify the power of a strategic mindset in conquering the challenges of the airborne domain safely and effectively.

Read more…

ASOG 2022 Focus Area | Industry Support

Source | ASOG Desk Editor

If you’re looking for a UAV job or your company needs to hire the right skill set, our new ASOG Corporate Support might be your right partner. Airbotic Talent just joined the outstanding business community that proudly recognizes the Airborne Sensor Operator profession and the mission of ASOG.

Airbotic Talent is a talent solutions consultancy dedicated to developing and growing the global Drone and Robotics sectors. Their business model is to operate with agility and flexibility to match the fast-paced nature and rapidly evolving landscape of the emerging technology markets they serve. They are proud to deliver recruitment campaigns significantly faster than the industry standard while maintaining a world-class customer experience.

Speaking of which, they have the following jobs available you might be interested in:

  • UAV & Training Standards Coordinator
  • UAV / Drone Pilot & Regulatory, Logistics, Test Evaluation Operative

To learn more about Airbotic Talent and its services, check them out on the ASOG Corporate Supporter page (clicking their Logo).

Read more…

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We decided to try something new - publish a special edition ASOG e-Newsletter. Why a special edition? In this case, last November, many European-based ASOG members and Corporate Supporters had a chance to gather at the EUROPEAN ROTORS VTOL show in Madrid, Spain, for professional fellowship and networking. Based on this, the ASOG Desk Editor captured selected stories to share with the ASOG community regarding fellow members and ASOG Corporate Supporters.

EUROPEAN ROTORS VTOL SHOW

If you didn't know, EUROPEAN ROTORS, Europe's largest vertical flight trade show and exposition, was held in Madrid, Spain, from Nov. 27-30. In the past, the show was held in Cologne, Germany. Still, the organizers - the European Helicopter Association (EHA) and the European Union Aviation Safety Agency (EASA) - decided to spread the love to other European locations.

In addition to providing exceptional business opportunities, the purpose of this year's EUROPEAN ROTORS was to bring the VTOL community (manned and unmanned) together to exchange knowledge, learn from one another, and debate with one shared goal - to improve safety in vertical aviation operations, i.e., something ASOG advocates all the time for both fixed-wing and rotorcraft operations.

e-Newsletter Sponsor

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ASOG "MEET-UP"

12364302865?profile=RESIZE_584xThe ASOG professional "Meet-Up" networking event held at Ibis Madrid Aeropuerto Barajas the night before the opening of the show was a resounding success, fostering meaningful connections and facilitating valuable interactions among ASOG members plus future members. The event started with a warm welcome and a drink(s) from the organizers (ASOG – Patrick Ryan and Event Sponsor – OFIL Europe: Dr. Peter Morawitz & Peter Schaffer), setting the tone for a relaxing and engaging atmosphere. Attendees from diverse Aerial Work and Special Mission sectors and expertise gathered in the retro-style hotel bar and made new friends and business connections. Plus, setting the stage for future collaboration, e.g., partnerships, establishing training courses, job opportunities, etc.

From the ASOG Desk Editor perspective, this ASOG in-person "Meet-Up" networking event proved to be a great "neutral zone" for fostering connections, fostering professional growth, and cultivating a sense of community between operators and industry. If you missed this Meet-Up, plan to attend the next events. We have several events in the pipeline planned for 2024 i.e., check them out at the end of this Newsletter.

ASOG "Meet-Up" Sponsor

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ASOG "BASE-CAMP"

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At this year's show, our ASOG Networking "Base Camp" was a bustling "neutral hub" for ASOs, aviation professionals, safety experts, and industry. The ASOG Base Camp was situated at the GA Buyer-GA Buyer Europe Magazine booth, with Astrid Ayling, Ian Sheppard and Patrick Ryan hosting. From day one, the base camp had a steady stream of visitors. As always, at an ASOG "Base Camp," attendees rendezvoused with old & new friends, engaged in meaningful conversations, exchanged ideas, and forged valuable connections throughout the event.

 

 

 

 

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Along with this, ASOG Corporate Supporter Centum-LifeSeeker invited many ASOG members who attended the show to a special event in the heart of Madrid. Without saying, we enjoyed some great gourmet food and super conversations. It was an excellent opportunity to connect with industry leaders from Spain and other European countries, exchange ideas, and network among friends in a relaxed environment. Also, without saying anything, we would like to say "Thank you" to ASOG member and CEO of CENTUM Héctor Estévez and his team for a wonderful evening.

 

 

 

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ASOG CORPORATE SUPPORTERS NEWS

Based on walking the floor of the show and visiting those ASOG Corporate Supporters who either attended the show or had a booth, we were able to get the latest news regarding their business efforts:

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AV Buyer | GA Buyer Magazine – Firecrown Media has acquired AvBuyer. Firecrown Media also acquired GA Buyer Europe and GA Buyer Africa, which offer classified listings and marketplaces that cover the European and African general aviation markets. If you didn't know, Firecrown Media owns some of the most storied publications, such as FLYING Magazine, Plane & Pilot, KITPLANES, Aviation Consumer, AVweb, Aviation Safety, IFR Magazine, Business Air, aircraftforsale.com, and many more.

 

 

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OLIF Europe – The Team from OLIF (Dr. Peter Morawitz & Peter Schaffer) revealed a new partnership with Phoenix Heli-Flight. This charter helicopter company operates a fleet of ten helicopters out of Alberta, Canada. Phoenix Heli-Flight has recently placed an order for OFIL's ROMLite OGI (Optical Gas Imaging) Hybrid system with radiometric HD LWIR sensors, plus a cooled MWIR imager for detecting methane, propane, and other hydrocarbon gases, marking the first-ever sale of its kind in North America.

 

 

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CENTUM – LifeSeeker – CENTUM-LifeSeeker highlighted their collaboration with HENSOLDT Avionics and FlySight to improve and enhance the capabilities of the Search & Rescue community. CEO Héctor Estévez participated in the Panel "Independent and Versatile OPENSIGHT Decision Support System: One System for All Missions," sharing a paper with Arend Wedekind from HENSOLDT Avionics and Mattia Carpin from FlySight, i.e., Reflections on emerging trends, integrations and the innovation that LifeSeeker brings to search and rescue missions.

 

 

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FlySight – FlySight presented its new advanced suite of OPENSIGHT's capabilities by offering live demonstrations of OPENSIGHT's diverse integrations with other SAR systems. With a particular focus on the OPENSIGHT system's versatility, FlySight demonstrated this with their new partnership with CENTUM and HENSOLDT.

Andrea Masini, Marina Ghidotti and Mattia Carpin from FlySight also revealed their desire to sponsor future ASOG organized & Industry provided ASOG Training events. Stay tuned for more information on the first course. Based on current discussions at the show, the first course will focus on "Basic SAR Mission Management."

 

 

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Airborne Technologies (ABT) GmbH – The team at the ABT booth (George DeCock, Thomas Unger, and Marcus Gurtner) relayed that they are expanding in all cardinal directions. They announced the establishment of an office in Dubai, UAE, and signed a MoU with Norwegian Aviation and Defence Group (NADG).

Additionally, Based on a discussion with Bryn Elliott, PAvCON President, the PAvCon Europe 2024 event will occur at Airborne Technologies. Bryn and the ABT family look forward to welcoming everyone on May 28-29, 2024, at the ABT facility in Wiener Neustadt, Austria.

 

 

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Smith Myers Communications -  The team at Smith Myers (Peter Myers and Andrew Munro) announced two new contract awards from European Coast Guard Agencies. Plus, they highlighted their partnership with the UAE's NSRC (National Search and Rescue Center) with ARTEMIS integrated into the NSRC AW139 Leonardo Helicopters SAR fleet.

 

WHAT'S NEXT

If you missed this ASOG event, we plan to conduct more in-person events in 2024. Here are some of the events we have in the pipeline:

  • AERO Friedrichshafen, April 17 – 20, Friedrichshafen, Germany
  • PAvCON, May 28 – 29, Wiener Neustadt, Austria
  • EUROPEAN ROTORS VTOL Show, TBD – Est. November, Amsterdam, Netherlands

If you're interested in participating in future events or your company wants to sponsor an event, DM us at info@aso-group.org.

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ASOG 2022 Focus Area | Industry Support

Source | ASOG Desk Editor

Undoubtedly, It's great to have a new corporate supporter who aims to improve the capabilities of the Aerial Work aviation sector. We're happy to announce Advanced Aviation Innovations / Scientific (AAI) Inc. is now a new ASOG Corporate Supporter.

If you weren't aware, AAI Scientific specializes in advanced Aerial Remote Sensing and Navigation Technologies. They have a range of high-resolution Imaging, Visual, and Gas remote sensing products and services to meet your needs. These include:

  • SANDS Navigation System (For aerial surveying)
  • High-Resolution Imaging and Visual Cameras
  • Hydrocarbon Remote Sensors

To learn more about AAI Scientific and its products, check them out on the ASOG Corporate Supporter page (click their logo). – OR - You can "Friend" Randy Burkham and message him via the ASOG e-mail service.

Read more…

What is Pilot, Aircrew & ASO Error

The term "Pilot Error" is a well-known term in the aviation community. However, what is "Airborne Sensor Operator" and "Aircrew Error"?

ASOG Focus Area | Aviation Safety

Source | ASOG Safety Center

Pilot errors, Airborne Sensor Operator (ASO) errors, and Aircrew errors all refer to mistakes made within the context of aviation but involve different roles and responsibilities.

Pilot Error

Definition - Pilot error refers specifically to mistakes made by the pilot(s) operating an aircraft. These errors can involve misjudgment, improper aircraft handling, incorrect decision-making, or failure to adhere to standard operating procedures.

Responsibility - Pilots are directly responsible for flying the aircraft, navigating, taking off, and landing, and ensuring the overall safety and control of the flight. Errors within this category pertain to the pilots' actions or decisions during their duties.

Airborne Sensor Operator Error

Definition - An airborne sensor operator error refers specifically to mistakes made by individuals operating specialized sensors and equipment on board an aircraft. These errors involve mishandling or misinterpreting data collected by sensors or improperly operating the equipment.

Responsibility - Sensor operators manage and operate sensors, cameras, radar, or other equipment used for specific tasks like surveillance, reconnaissance, or data collection. Errors might involve misinterpreting data, incorrectly adjusting equipment settings, or overlooking crucial information during operational tasks.

Aircrew Error

Definition - Aircrew error is a broader term encompassing mistakes made by any member of the crew on board an aircraft. This term includes pilots, Co-Pilots, Airborne Sensor Operators, Flight paramedics, and any other personnel serving specific roles during a flight.

Responsibility - Aircrew error extends beyond pilot errors, encompassing a more comprehensive array of potential mistakes. It might involve communication breakdowns, coordination issues between crew members, procedural errors in tasks beyond piloting, and other collaborative tasks necessary for safe flight operations.

Conclusion

To bring it all together, pilot error is related to errors made by those specifically flying the aircraft, aircrew error encompasses mistakes made by any crew member, and airborne sensor operator error involves mistakes made by individuals operating specialized sensors and equipment aboard the aircraft for data collection or monitoring purposes. As you can see, each category denotes different roles and responsibilities within the aviation environment.

Either way, errors made from any specific aircrew position in the aircraft can lead to a possible "Chain of Events" that can result in mission failure or, worse, an aviation accident. Understanding your role & responsibilities is critical, and understanding (and supporting) your fellow aircrew member's roles & responsibilities is part of any aircrew member's professional duty & development.

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Wing Tips – My Hypoxic Event

As an aircrew association, part of our mission is to provide a platform for our members to share their experiences to help others improve in their professional aviation and aerial remote sensing endeavors. With that, one of our newer members just shared this article with the ASOG Desk Editor with the intent to help others – "My Hypoxic Event" by Darren Daigle

 

ASOG Article of the Month | January 2024

ASOG Author | Darren Daigle

Wing Tips

My Hypxoic Event & What I Learned from this Flying Incident

I have had a 25-year career in the Canadian Air Force CAF with about 5000 hours of flying as a Sensor Operator. I have also continued to fly as a drone pilot and now as a sensor operator using the L3 MX15HDi multispectral camera.

In my current job, I fly with a crew in a light twin. We do fire Mapping, and sometimes we fly high enough to require supplemental oxygen.

Our portable oxygen system was my first exposure to the "cannula" system, electronic regulator, and oxygen bottle. The cannula, for those unfamiliar with it, is similar to the tube and hoses you see with some hospital patients. I had never needed it in the CAF since the Aurora (Canadian P-3) is pressurized. The instructions for using the regulator and oxygen bottle were pretty straightforward. The "cannula" is a tube that wraps around the ears and is held under the nose. The regulator senses a breath in and gives a pulse of oxygen through the cannula.

The only description of using the cannula is a picture on the envelope.

I have had hypobaric training with the military, which proved invaluable in this situation. We climbed above 14,000 Feet AMSL, and the oxygen pulses seemed normal. I began feeling light-headed and immediately recognized a possible lack of oxygen. I notified the pilot. We walked through steps to ensure proper flow. I checked the oxygen supply bottle for adequate quantity; it was in the green. I then checked the supply hose to the regulator for kinks or blockages; there were none. I then checked the hose and cannula for kinks or blockages; it was fine.

I decided to wait and see what the problem was for the time being since the symptoms were so mild. I then decided to use my smartwatch to check my O2 level. It showed 76%. I didn't think it was accurate, but I thought it was too much evidence to demonstrate oxygen deprivation. I then pulled the cannula closer to my nose. I noticed that the flow occurred with every breath rather than every second or third breath. It became evident to me that I had the cannula to loose. My symptoms cleared up, and I felt much better. The cannula had to be tight enough to be uncomfortable.

I realized there is no documentation to help identify a lack of proper operation. I suggested to our company that a procedure be implemented to verify that the cannula provided a "puff" every breath above 14,000 feet. I feel this should have been part of the cannula's instructions.

I caution SOs to be very careful when using new equipment that doesn't have excellent documentation. If you think there's a problem, there probably is. Work on the problem until it is resolved. My pilot suggested we could declare an emergency and descend. It was my training and experience that made me hold off a little. Ultimately, the mission was completed, and a lesson was learned.

I hope my experience can prevent any other SO from suffering from a hypoxic event.

 

About the Author

12345732265?profile=RESIZE_180x180Darren Daigle | Darran has over 25+ years of experience in aviation and aerial remote-sensing operations. His skills and expertise span 22 years in the Canadian Forces, five years as an IAI Heron UAV pilot/Instructor, three years as a DA-42 Mission Specialist operating MX-15 HDI in support of ALE and forest fire mapping operations.

Read more…

ASOG Focus Area | Industry Support

Source | Eric GARNAUD, Airbus Flight Academy Europe

If you’re looking for a cost-effective, dual-use, multi-mission, adaptive Intelligence, Surveillance, and Reconnaissance (ISR) aircraft, Eric Garnaud at Airbus Flight Academy Europe has one for sale.

Eric says they have a Cirrus SR 22 Special Mission ready for a new Special Mission Operator. If you’re interested, Eric relayed the following information regarding its Special Mission aircraft configuration and how to contact him.

Specifications

Airbus Flight Academy Europe SR 22 Special Mission aircraft consists of various sensors (Electro-Optical Turret, AIS…) that collect data, SAMSARA computer (MPU) for data fusion and display of tactical situations to an operator console in the cabin, and communication equipment (Omni Line-of-Sight datalink, dual SATCOM/GPS, VHF/FM AIS).

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Sensor & Mount

The Electro-Optical turret is fixed to the aircraft by a metallic structure bolted to 4 hardpoints in the baggage compartment. The metallic structure comprises two longitudinal C-beams and a transversal metallic square tube.

A machined arm is pinned to the metal tube and goes through the fuselage via a cutout in the baggage door. The machined arm features provisions to bolt the turret and piano hinges to accommodate the fairing. The support structure and the fairing are designed to accommodate EOS turrets from Ø 7 in. to Ø 10,2 in. and a max weight of 37,5 lbs.

The Electro-Optical turret is a TASE 400 HD from Cloud Cap Tech ( currently removed). This assembly comprises the sensor equipped with a vibration collar and a dovetail. The upper (female) dovetail is bolted to the machined metal arm. The lower dovetail bolted to the vibration collar, is sled into the female dovetail and then secured by locking teeth and a safety pin.

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Operator Station

The Mission Console (see Figure 2.1 above) is made from a standard SR22 seat structure, which has been modified with machined parts to install:

  • Two 15” touchscreens;
  • Keyboard and joystick - Mounted on a flexible gooseneck.

Equipment Configuration

The supporting mission equipment and system as the MPU 200 AISV, SATCOM (SDU 7310, HLD 7260), and DATALINK (FEND NG, MODEM) are installed on an aluminum Support Plate mounted on the Structure Assy for Turret inside the baggage compartment (see Figure 2.1 above).

Electrical Power

The power distribution is given through the AFT CB PANEL mounted on the Structure Assy for Turret. Two cut-off panels are installed on the Support Plate to connect all the harnesses between the equipment and the aircraft.

Antennas

As shown below, three antennas are installed (Omni Line-of-Sight, dual GPS/SATCOM, VHF/FM).

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Duel Use

It’s possible to return to the pre-mod configuration by

  • removing the turret with the machined arm and closing the baggage door with a door closeout;
  • Removing the mission plate and installing a cargo floor;
  • Removing the mission console and installing a crew seat.

Additional configuration options include:

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For More Information

If you’re interested in adding a dual-use and cost-effective airborne sensor platform to your operations, contact Eric directly via the following channels:

Eric GARNAUD

Responsable Navigabilité  AFAE

Airworthiness Manager AFAE

Phone: +33(0)5.17.00.82.72

          : +33(0)6.71.83.57.91

eric.garnaud@afa-eu.com

Airbus Flight Academy  Europe

39 rue des figuiers

16430 Champniers

FRANCE

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Wishing You a Joyful Holiday Season!

We wish you a joyful Holiday Season and a prosperous New Year.

 

Thank you for being part of our professional community. We look forward to continuing to help you reach your fullest professional aircrew potential in 2024 and beyond.

As you enter the new year, please continue to enjoy our community designed to help you plan for success in your aviation career journey.

 

Your Friends at Airborne Sensor Operators Group

Patrick Ryan

ASOG President

Benjamin Kabelik

ASOG Secretary General

Tanja Wimmer-Ryan

ASOG Treasurer

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