We found this video from AUVSI highlighting the work of the congressional UAV caucus building awareness of UAVs and other unmanned vehicles amongst congressional members and their staffs. This inspired us to ask AUVSI a few questions about what they do and why they do it.
Whats is AUVSI and why should we care?
AUVSI is a nonprofit organization representing the entire global unmanned systems community through advocacy, education and leadership. The organization serves more than 6,000 individuals from 55+ countries and 1,500+ organizations. AUVSI has grown to become the largest organization in the world representing this industry because we provide top notch information through our magazine, e-newsletter and website and also through social media sources now too. We also host events that bring industry leaders together including our annual convention which recently hosted 450+ exhibitors and more than 6,000 attendees. AUVSI also provides advocacy support, networking opportunities, information, studies and other resources to our members.
How does AUVSI see hobbyists and entrepreneurs fitting into the long term picture? Should they become members of AUVSI?
Hobbyists are already members of AUVSI! We would love to see more of the hobbyists and entrepreneurs get involved with our advocacy efforts. This is an industry where so much of the technology can be impacted by the efforts of small businesses and hobbyists who represent the grass roots of the industry.
Is shared airspace inevitable? Is it going to be safe?
We believe shared airspace will only happen when manned and unmanned aircraft can be integrated safely. Safety is priority one for all involved from FAA and similar organizations worldwide to manufacturers.
Does AUVSI have any estimates about possible jobs that could be created
by better regulations which allow commercial operation of UAVs for tasks
like real estate photography?
We recently put together a report for the Congressional UAV Caucus and it addresses your questions about job estimates.
If you are looking for a project for your schools robotics club, information about their student UAS (UAV) competition can be found here. A list of all the student competitions is also available.
AUVSI also has a call for papers up for AUVSI’s Unmanned Systems North America 2011 conference in Washington, DC. Abstracts are due November 10th so don't delay.
Here are some more videos from AUVSI