Thursday, 2 January 2014

The Language of Drones

Has the recent publicity surrounding commercial drones left you wondering what some of the terminology used to describe their features and applications actually means? Well look no further than our handy drones glossary below:


AP:  Aerial Photography

Autonomous:  Ability to make decisions without human intervention

COA:  Certificate of Authorization, issued by the FAA to fly drones

Collision Avoidance:  Also known as 'Sense and Avoid'

FAA:  Federal Aviation Administration

Fixed-wing:  Aircraft that is capable of flight using wings that generate lift

FPV:  First Person View. A method using to control a drone from the pilot's view point

GCS:  Ground Control Station

GPS:  Global Positioning System

Gyroscope:  A device that measures angular velocity and helps maintain orientation

LOS:  Line of Sight, FAA requirement that drones stay within a pilot's direct visual control

Multicopter:  Rotorcraft with more than two rotors

Nano-drone:  Micro UAV, typically small enough to fit in one hand

Payload:  Carrying capacity of an aircraft measured in terms of weight

Pilot-in-Command:  The pilot responsible for the operation of an aircraft during flight time

Quadcopter:  Multicopter that is lifted and propelled by four rotors

Range:  Distance an aircraft can fly between takeoff and landing as limited by fuel capacity

RC:  Radio Control

RTF:  Ready to Fly

UAS:  Unmanned Aircraft System

UAV:  Unmanned Aerial Vehicle


We hope you find this glossary useful, and we welcome contributions from you to build on this starter list.


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