UAV Trials – Niassa

During late August 2012, we travelled to northern Mozambique to a wildlife reserve the size of Denmark, called Niassa. Here we carried out the first stage of our trials using basic "off the shelf" model aircraft, APM2 autopilot systems from 3D Robotics and a colour as well as thermal imaging camera from FLIR. These three components gave us the backbone of what will eventually become the most sought after tool in every conservationists arsenal.  

IMG_0130-3

"These Trails could not have taken place if it were not for the help of many sponsors who in one way or another contributed to the overal success of these trials.
For all their individual contributions I am most grateful." - Simon Beart, IAPF UAV Technical development manger

To read the full report written by Damien Mander on the UAV trials in Mozambique click this link here. 

Our work over the month we spent trialling our UAV's has lead us to several conclusions on the equipment needed to carry out a beneficial UAV operation in Africa. These conclusions will be covered in a separate release soon. The images contained in the gallery below provide an insight behind the scenes as we tested some 'entry level' systems in Mozambique as well as South Africa. Please click on the image to open the gallery view.

People worth thanking for helping make these trials a success
Channel 9's 60 Minutes who paid for all of my flights and gear to be flown to and from Mozambique.
FLIR Australia (thermal imaging) helped us out tremendously with a discounted camera. 
Mecer from South africa, loaned us a Durabook Windows laptop to trial out as a capable ground station.
Lugenda wilderness camp for accommodating, feeding and ensuring we were looked after whilst out in the heat on the airfield.
3D Robotics - for shipping us our spare components in record time.Thanks Chris Anderson for your personal input