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Are the days of the career pilot numbered?

aviation helicopter careers jobs pilot shortage drones

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#41 avbug

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Posted 12 June 2016 - 23:50

Ag requires high situational awareness, fixed wing or rotor.  

 

UAV's in ag work presently are for crop surveillance and inspection, not for aerial application.



#42 Astro

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Posted 13 June 2016 - 13:25

http://napavalleyreg...02595de8cd.html


It has begun

#43 avbug

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Posted 13 June 2016 - 15:44

It began a long time ago, when  a great deal of aerial application fell to the ground rigs.  The ground rigs lost a lot of their work to farmers who turned to chemigation, applying chemicals in irrigation water, along with fertilizers, etc. 

 

It still takes someone with expertise to examine the crops, make chemical recommendations, and in many cases apply them.  Further, there are many places where the guy that's been on site for 20 years is still considered the "new guy" to the locals, and they'd rather have the work done by someone they trust.  

 

Bringing in unmanned assets won't just be met with resistance from pilots, but also from the end user farmers, too.  

 

Where unmanned assets are over a field or fire or some place else, there are additional technicians, remote pilots, and others who will be hired to keep that equipment operating.  



#44 Astro

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Posted 28 June 2016 - 11:01

http://napavalleyreg...02595de8cd.html
It has begun

There was a job ad recently for AG ground crew (with pilot possibilities in the future) that I was considering applying to? Then I thought (especially after reading that article) that 2 years from now when I'm "ready" to climb into the cockpit, there might not be a cockpit to climb into anymore?!

#45 rotormandan

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Posted 28 June 2016 - 16:02

Astro- with that thought, why get into any form of flying. Or really, why any career? Our future is heading to automation.

As far as drones spraying, it'll be a long long time before the pilot is gone. The RMAX in the article has been around along time. The article states 25 years. There old videos on youtube of it spraying rice patties.

A jetranger typically carries 90-100 gal loads. Bigger aircraft used like hueys and a lot of planes might carry closer to the ballpark of 200 gal loads

This thing is small. It holds 16 liters of chemical. That's just over 4 gal. Typical aerial application goes on at 2, 5, 10 gallons/acre. With everything in between and more. We do some at 17.5 gal/ac and some stuff goes on at 20 gal. Ground sprayers use a lot more water in their mix to get coverage and spray at 20-100 gal/ac. This thing won't hold even 1 ac worth of material. .

Granted this thing sprays a concentrate, alot of chemical require a lot of coverage to be effective. It depends on the pest and how it works. The article says its spraying fungicide on grapes. I assume its something that gets taken in by the plants and translocted through the plant to stop the desease. Full coverage not needed.

The Rmax will be great for small acre farms with sensitive borders. Like houses, neighborhoods, and organics next door. We turn down a hand full of work because towns have been built up on all sides of some farms with suburban neighborhoods on all borders. It flys slow and can be real precise. Perfect for these places. No way it can keep up with the amount of work that gets done around the country. It has it's place but like everything else, it'll be a long time before the drone fully replaces pilots.
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#46 Astro

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Posted 30 June 2016 - 15:10

Astro- with that thought, why get into any form of flying. Or really, why any career? Our future is heading to automation.


Since you put it that way I think I'll just become a mechanic, since our robotic overlords will most definitely keep those of us around who can fix and maintain them!

#47 avbug

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Posted 30 June 2016 - 18:32

I've never had a shortage of maintenance work.  Nor of flying. Or other duties.   Or employers.   Maintenance qualification isn't a bad thing to  get; even if you don't take work that uses it, it will enhance your resume, and may open some doors, and if you do find yourself out of work (and you've invested in some experience and in tools), it will provide you continued employment. 


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#48 silver-eagle

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Posted 15 July 2016 - 07:36

There has been a second Tesla crash while running in autonomous mode and a cry from the alphabet auto clubs and at least a few congress critters asking that the mode be disabled. One of the tesla crashes had the "driver" watching videos and not paying attention to the road.
What happens when one of these autonomous aircraft crashes taking out people on the ground or a plane load of passengers?
While technology is nice to have, autonomous vehicles are not yet ready for prime time.
And do not use a drone helicopter as an example. Those are ground based controlled. The closest we have to autonomous aircraft are the fms systems that go from runway to runway. The first officer will get replaced by the fms once the airlines decide he's no longer needed. The pilot will remain for many years to come.

~john
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My heart is in
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