Imagine applying the rapid advancement of drone technology to guide the future of aviation.
Thatâ€™s the opportunity for graduates of Griffith Universityâ€™s new cutting-edge Electronic and Unmanned Aerial Vehicle Engineering (UAV) major, according to Associate Professor Steven O’Keefe.
The head of electronic engineering at Griffithâ€™s Nathan campus says the major is offered at arguably the most fertile period in the development of UAV technology.
Available through the Bachelor of Engineering (Honours) at Griffithâ€™s Nathan campus, the UAV major offers students the chance to graduate as qualified electronics engineers and certified drone pilots, ready to design and fly the unmanned aircraft of tomorrow.
â€œGraduates will be equipped to develop advanced new aircraft and systems, as well as the applications theyâ€™re put to,â€ says Steven.
â€œAnd UAV design and application will continue to evolve with greater navigational capabilities, greater autonomous ability and artificial intelligence, longer endurance and greater payloads.â€
Steven says UAVsâ€”more commonly known as dronesâ€”have been quickly adopted by industries and enterprises as diverse as:
- agriculture, where drones are used for farm management issues such as water requirements, pest control, topographical mapping, disease monitoring and yield management
- entertainment, with film, TV, concerts and events now routinely filmed by drones, even indoors
- search and rescue, including searching for lost people or lifesavers applying UAVs to monitor swimmers and sharks
- industrial inspection, where UAV application is a cheaper and safer option for routine inspections of power lines, wind turbines and bridges
- defence and law enforcement, including applications such as police surveillance and armed drone aircraft, through to finger-sized aircraft carried in a soldierâ€™s pocket
- scientific research, including environmental monitoring, atmospheric science and pest monitoring
- medical deliveries in disaster zones and remote developing countries.
â€œThe list goes on and on as more amazingly sophisticated UAV payloads are developed,â€ says Steven.
â€œTheyâ€™re currently experimenting with flying UAVs underground in mines.â€
The major equips graduates with leading-edge electronic engineering expertise and includes avionics courses from Griffithâ€™s School of Engineering.
â€œGraduatesâ€™ combined skillset in aviation, avionics and UAV design will allow them to master design of task-specific aircraft, or development of new technologies or applications,â€ says Steven.
Find out more about studying engineering and information technology at Griffith.