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Syracuse, New York,

Our Thoughts on the Unmanned Traffic Management Convention


From November 8-10, the Microdrones team attended the Unmanned Traffic Management (UTM) Convention held in Syracuse, NY.

We enjoyed introducing our drones and new mapping solutions as we took advantage of the many learning opportunities available.

We asked the team members who attended UTM to share their thoughts on the convention. Here’s what they had to say:

Sara Furlong, Content Marketing Manager

“I spent most of my time in the booth speaking with visitors. I enjoyed seeing how impressed people were with our aircraft and mapping solutions. I had many interesting conversations about things people are currently doing or are trying to do with drones. There was such a variety – smart cities initiatives, farming, police work.

I also enjoyed Governor Cuomo’s speech about the state’s commitment to supporting the growth of the UAV industry in upstate New York. His explanation of how innovation economies develop in clusters made a lot of sense. I look forward to helping Microdrones grow here.”

Vincent Pilon, Operations Director

“I spent the entire time at UTM attending presentations and it was very enlightening. The education I received will help us to prioritize research and development projects that will help us better prepare for future regulatory airworthiness requirements. I left feeling energized to work on projects related to cybersecurity/vulnerability assessment, EMI susceptibility, GPS denied Mag inoperations, and redundant critical safety systems.”

Chuck Dorgan, Sales Director

“UTM was a great learning experience for me. It was a different type of show than Microdrones normally attends. Our purpose in being there was less sales and marketing focused and more exploratory. Through conversations with people from many different industries, I was able to gain insights that I wouldn’t normally have encountered. This information will help me to better assist customers in the future.”

Bradley Booth, UAV Pilot

“I was very interested and excited about seeing NASA’s research and testing for the UTM system. NASA has setup a system of tests mimicking what the UTM system would look like. Every UAV in the test gets pre-approved for a specific chunk of airspace for a period of time. Each vehicle is tracked, whether they transmit their position (ADSB or transponder type of device) or are tracked by radar. So the system knows the location of each UAV and can tell and alert the participating traffic of any rogue operations. Also, the UAV participating in the UTM system will be able to monitor the surrounding airspace so they know who is around them, if they are operating as they had planned and can take evasive action if necessary. I am hoping that Microdrones will be able to collaborate with NASA on this important project.” 

Valerie Wiehl, Engineer

“The most exciting part of UTM for me was how impressed people were with our drones. Visitors were interested to learn more about how our drones are manufactured in Germany and about our direct georeferencing solutions. Also, my background is not aviation, so this show was like a crash course in the aviation industry for me. There was a great variety of experts from many different disciplines and that made for very interesting discussion.”

The Microdrones team arrived bright and early for booth set-up on November 8, but we all still managed to make it to the voting booths beforehand. This md4-1000 proudly sports an “I Voted” sticker.