Dear Fellow Mappers,
I would like to share information about one of the first RPAS (Remotely
Piloted Aircraft System) schools in Europe, Fly & Film SA
<http://www.rpas-school.com/>. The school is situated in the town of
Sierre <https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sierre> in the canton of Valais.
I studied for one week at this school and received a RPAS pilot
certificate (1). The course was in French language, and the certificate
is in two languages French and English, since the latter is the de facto
language of civil aviation.
I fly RPAS for quite a while already, nevertheless this training was
interesting and useful. Among instructors were helicopter & RPAS pilots,
a director of an international airport, an ornithologist. Five days of
intensive training were followed by a theoretical exam and a practical
(piloting) exam, which I passed both successfully. It is mentioned in
the certificate that the piloting exam was with and without GPS
stabilization, and that is why the certificate has got a "no
restrictions" clause (fr. Restrictions: aucune).
We studied legal and insurance issues, environment protection, general
aviation topics, meteorology, maintenance and safety. The practical
training was focused on precision flying, safety procedures, etc.
I fly mostly to produce oblique low-altitude aerial photographs, which I
add to the OSM map via an /image/ tag. You can see how much additional
information provides such an aerial image on an example of the UEFA
headquarters (2) on the map or a Colovray Stadium in Nyon (3) (the
clickable /image/ link is in the left part of a page).
Perhaps, there are other approaches of using RPAS for mapping and data
fusion. In this respect I think it would be a good idea to create in
future an OSM Aviation working group, similar to the HOT Aviation
working group, but for general mapping, not only for mapping of disaster
areas. In such a working group we could share know-hows, technics,
ideas, organize workshops, etc.
With best regards,