University of Vermont

Core member | Spatial Analysis Lab

The University of Vermont (UVM) has been employing UAS technology since 2011, carrying out hundreds of missions throughout the United States. The UAS program at UVM was born out of necessity when Tropical Storm Irene exposed gaps in Vermont’s ability to rapidly acquire detailed and accurate imagery to inform disaster response and recovery. From infrastructure inspection to invasive species mapping, UVM’s UAS Team has led the application of UAS technology to numerous domain areas that have helped improve safety, find efficiencies, and led to more informed decisions. UVM has been recognized as a leader in applying UAS for disaster response and was the first group in the nation to use UAS to respond to a rail accident. Working with FEMA, state, and local agencies, UVM has participated in numerous disaster response exercises.

UVM’s UAS activities have received attention in the local and national media, won national awards, and has led the innovation of new UAS technologies. Research activities have focused on UAS implementation, risk assessment, standard operating procedures, organizational challenges, cost-benefit analysis, regulatory issues, platform and sensor selection, and case studies. A leader in the organizational implementation of UAS, UVM was selected by three separate states to help integrate UAS into their operations. UVM has developed a robust set of UAS training, education, and evaluation materials for K-12, undergraduate, graduate, and professionals. UVM has run UAS workshops for state agencies, universities, the National Center for Campus Public Safety, the National Transportation Training Directors, the United Nations, the National Academies of Sciences, and FEMA.

A core tenant of UVM’s UAS program is the commitment to diversity and inclusion. The majority of the UAS Team’s members are women. Through outreach and education activities, UVM puts a particular emphasis on introducing UAS technology to underrepresented communities.

For More Information | Contact:

Jarlath O’Neil-Dunne
Research Associate, Director of Spatial Analysis Lab
Phone: 802 656-3324

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