NATS, the UK’s leading provider of air traffic management services, and Sky-Futures, a commercial drone-based inspection services and training provider, have officially taken their partnership to the skies.
The partnership, which was first announced earlier this year and looks to ‘change the landscape of drone training in the UK’, was launched at the Sky-Futures Training Academy in Gloucestershire yesterday with a host of industry leaders in attendance.
The launch day featured various drone strategy workshops, live demonstrations showcasing emergency services and enterprise scenarios.
As businesses and public services increasingly seek to embrace the benefits of drone technology, the NATS/Sky-Futures partnership will deliver tailored, scenario-based training that will aim to set a new standard for the UK with a prominent focus on safety.
Facilities at the SFTA include a ship, railway line, motorway, oil rig, metal towers and commercial buildings. During the launch event day, guests were treated to two live demonstrations with a DJI Inspire and an Intel Falcon 8+, showcasing the standard of UAV flight the course looks to take its students up to.
Nick Rogers, Sky-Futures’ co-founder and chief regulatory and training officer, told Commercial Drone Professional, the launch day forms part of a long-running partnership with the national air traffic controller.
“It’s fantastic; we’ve been talking to NATS for probably over two years now and working, doing collaboration projects and it was the natural next step to devise the training project.”
James Cranswick, NATS’ drones business manager, added: “The first iteration of the way we were going to work as a partnership evolved over those 18 months and it represented that learning and knowledge that we gained and played to both of our strengths to really delivery value to our clients, be it emergency services or enterprise.”
The event was also attended by Northamptonshire Fire & Rescue Service, who carried out a demonstration with its one-of-a-kind £1m command vehicle.
A selection of images from the day can be found below.