Aerobotics to lead drone class at Northwest Technical Institute

by Jeff Della Rosa ( 256 views 

Flying with a drone for video and photo productions

Springfield, Mo.-based Aerobotics LLC will host an entry-level class for those interested in flying drones from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. April 21 at Northwest Technical Institute in Springdale. Rick and Amy Casada, co-owners of Aerobotics, will lead the class teaching students Federal Aviation Administration rules and regulations on owning and operating a drone, or unmanned aircraft system (UAS). Students also will have the opportunity to fly a drone and wear goggles, offering a first-person view from the drone’s perspective.

Each student will have between three and five minutes to fly a drone, depending on the weather and the class size. The drone, which can fly up to 50 mph, will be restricted to only fly up to 4 mph and within a specific area.

Regardless of use, drones that weigh more than 0.55 pounds and less than 55 pounds must be registered with the FAA. One who is at least 13 years old can register a drone. Between 2017 and 2022, the FAA expects the number of these model drones that are registered will rise 118% to more than 2.4 million. Over the same period, the number of drones registered for commercial use is expected to rise 308% to 451,800.

The Casadas have been certified FAA drone pilots for about a year. Those who wish to operate a drone commercially must be certified to do so by passing the Part 107 exam. After the April 21 course, the Casadas plan to offer a 15-hour course to teach those interested in becoming commercially certified. The April 21 course is $275 and will be limited to 40 students. Sign up deadline is April 16, and more information is available by calling NTI at 479-306-7969. In the event of rain, the course will take place May 5.