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UAS in Agriculture

(electronic noir music) – [Tony Sauerbrey] A
drone is really a tool that people are using to go
out and collect information. With that collection of
data, they’re able to make much better informed decisions on whatever it is that you’re doing. – It takes a drone maybe 20 minutes just to fly 80 acres when,
if you wanted to walk a field and scout it, it’d take maybe
an hour, hour and a half. – It made sense for MSU and NMC to partner for this course to give
students experience with what is coming in the drone world as it relates to
agriculture and turf grass and all these new industries that are being changed by UAS technology. (electronic noir music) What’s unique about this program is it’s not just a classroom program. We are actually going out in the field, we’re going to actual locations. – We spent a week in January
doing in-class training with computer software and building – We built our drones, then
we had an online portion, I took my FAA Part 107
test, got my license and now we’re here in Traverse City. – [Austin Lucas] We flew
out to Yuba Airport, which has a cherry orchard
and corn fields there. We went to Black Star Farms,
which is a big grape vineyard and now we’re at MI Local Hops, which is over 200 acres of hops. – [Tony] It’s turf grass, we’re going out to golf courses. We’re actually working with
the end users, the growers. We’re trying to give the students a very real life experience. – [Black Capped Man] We’re making maps, mapping out the lay of the land. We also have this spray drawn out here, which we’re just going over a green and putting water in the tank
and just going back and forth setting our pinpoints. – [Tony] The job market for
people who have skills like this is continuing to grow. – [Austin] By going to the Michigan State Institute of Agricultural Technology, the skills I learn here are gonna give me a step above everyone else. There’s only been two years of this class and it’s the only one of
it’s kind in the country. – I eventually been using
the app my internship and we use it a lot to identify
problems out on the field and to get an overall
perspective of how the field is doing and finding your problem area. – [Tony] We’re trying to make sure that when students leave here, that they have a strong understanding of: what can I do with this,
how would I go forward, and actually pursuing this with either the job that I already have or maybe I wanna start my own business or whatever it is that they wanna do. (wobbly electronic music) – [Megan Bajena] Are
instructors are actually from the MMC Aviation Drone Department and so it’s really nice
getting their experience, not only as instructors but they also have businesses as well, so they
teach how you can incorporate this into a business aspect and really how to to use it functionally. (wobbly electronic music) – [Tony] So we’re not
just flying drones around, we’re actually going out
there, we’re collecting data, we’re collecting imagery,
we’re learning how to analyze that imagery, how
to create something with it and in the end, we’re
producing a… deliverable, if you will, to the customer and that’s what you have
to do in the real world. So that’s what we’re doing here. (wobbly electronic music)

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