Research by TRUSS fellow, Siyuan Chen, from UCD, involves the use of Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAV) for monitoring infrastructure safety (project ESR14). An initial step in his research requires to receive specialized training that will enable him to qualify as a pilot. For this purpose, Siyuan took a 2-day RPAS (Remotely Piloted Aircraft Systems) Ground and Flight Training Course in Weston Airport, Dublin, on the 17th and 18th October 2015. The course covered the theory, legislation and operation of an RPAS with subjects as air law, airspace operating principles, meteorology, aircraft knowledge, principles of flight, ops procedures, risk assessment, safety management system and end with an exam. Siyuan successfully passed the exam and went one step further towards obtaining the RPAS Pilot’s Licence. The course was also a good opportunity for Siyuan to get a better understanding on how to do research in a legal and safety environment.
Based on the Irish Aviation Authority (IAA) requirement, successful completion of the ground training course allows to proceed for flight testing in order to obtain an RPAS Commercial Pilot’s Licence. Additionally, operators have to meet the following requirements:
- Be in good health.
- Minimum age 18 years old.
- English language proficient.
- 14 hrs ground-school training.
- Successful completion of ground-school exam.
- 7 hrs flight instruction.
- 12 hrs logged flight time .
- 20 Take-offs and landings.
- Successful completion of flight test.
- All pilots must fly under a certified operator.