Rise of the Drones: how Unmanned Aircraft Systems (UAS) create new opportunities for environmental remote sensing and geosciences


Royal Society of Tasmania September Lecture

Start Date

4th Sep 2018 8:00pm

End Date

4th Sep 2018 9:00pm


Royal Society Room, Tasmanian Museum and Art Gallery, Hobart. (Entry from Dunn Place)

RSVP / Contact Information

No RSVP necessary. Enquiries: or 6165 7014

In recent years, the increased use of ‘drones’ in civilian applications has received both positive and negative coverage in the media. Many find the thought of flying robots that ‘invade’ people’s lives or pose risks to passenger airplanes too intimidating and unacceptable. However, this talk will show that drones (preferably termed Unmanned Aircraft Systems or UAS) fill a novel and exciting niche when it comes to observing, mapping, and monitoring the environment at unprecedented levels of detail.

The TerraLuma research project at the University of Tasmania has developed novel tools and algorithms for environmental remote sensing applications and aerial surveys using UAS, with a range of applications including precision agriculture and viticulture; mapping and monitoring vegetation in remote locations such as Antarctica; assessment of coastal erosion; mapping of geological structures; transforming images into knowledge.

Associate Professor Lucieer will give an overview of the technology and exciting applications of UAS remote sensing, sharing his team’s practical field experiences, their ups and downs, dos and don’ts from the last nine years of operating UAS for remote sensing research.

Arko obtained his PhD degree in 2004 from the International Institute for Geo-Information Science and Earth Observation (ITC) and Utrecht University in The Netherlands. His current focus is on quantitative remote sensing of vegetation with the use of sophisticated UAS sensors to better understand the structure, distribution, and functioning of vegetation, and to bridge the observational scale gap between field samples and satellite observations.

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