FAA 333-Exempt Startup to Provide Time-Lapse Photography, High-Resolution Mapping for Nation's First UAS Business and Aviation Park
GRAND FORKS, ND--(Marketwired - Oct 7, 2015) - Grand Sky, America's first unmanned aerial systems (UAS) business and aviation park, announced it has partnered with UAS operator SkySkopes to produce a wide range of high-resolution imagery of construction activities at the park, which is being developed on a site co-located on Grand Forks Air Force Base. Phase 1 of the historic project is currently under construction and expected to be complete in 2016.
Images produced by SkySkopes will include time-lapse photography of the construction as well as high-resolution mapping to benefit architectural and construction purposes. SkySkopes will collect imagery at Grand Sky over a nine-week period. The company will utilize heavy-lift octocopters, which allow the ability to carry a variety of payloads and to conduct stable operations during windy conditions.
"Grand Sky was created to help advance the UAS industry by offering a dedicated space for companies to conduct research and fly unmanned aircraft, whether they be established aviation industry players or ambitious UAS startups," says Thomas Swoyer, Jr., President of Grand Sky Development Company. "As we advance our project to the next phase we're happy to partner with SkySkopes to visually document the process. This young company has only begun to spread its wings in the industry and we are pleased to provide a launch pad for its future success."
SkySkopes has been officially operating at Grand Sky since Sept. 9, 2015, when it launched a DJI S1000 model under the call sign Grand Sky 01, denoting its status as the first commercial UAS to be launched from Grand Sky. The initial flight also marked the first time a commercial UAS received FAA permission to operate on a U.S. military base.
"We've been making history for months -- as the first UAS startup to receive Section 333 exemption in North Dakota, the first company to fly a commercial UAS at Grand Sky and the first company in the country to fly a commercial UAS on military property -- and we are thrilled to help another history-maker like Grand Sky document its progress," says SkySkopes CEO and President Matt Dunlevy.
As the number of companies applying for Section 333 exemptions from the FAA continues to accelerate in lieu of widespread agency regulations, SkySkopes intends to expand its leadership role within the UAS industry by developing and implementing the industry's highest quality safety standards, offering cutting-edge advanced thermal imagery into its list of service offerings and, ultimately, providing training services to other pilots and sensor operators. At Grand Sky, the company will continue to prove its flight capabilities and skill through frequent launches and data/image-gathering missions.
"Every little bit we can do to pave the way for other Section 333-exempt companies is a boost to the industry," says Dunlevy. "We think we can serve as sort of a guide post for small UAS companies. Our position of leadership is one that will be an example for other 333s to follow."
About Grand Sky
Grand Sky is a 217-acre business and aviation park focused on developing and nurturing the Unmanned Aerial Systems (UAS) industry in North Dakota and the U.S. It is a development executed in partnership with Grand Forks County, N.D., and is co-located on Grand Forks Air Force Base. Grand Sky offers 1.2 million square feet of hangar, office, shop, laboratory and data center space available on a build-to-suit basis with financing available.
Grand Forks, N.D.-based SkySkopes is a Federal Aviation Administration 333 exempted and fully insured UAS operator offering a wide range of high-resolution video and imaging services, including topographical mapping, thermoimagery, hyperspectral imagery and 3D modeling, to clients including members of the construction and real estate industries as well as cell tower and wind turbine operators. Founded in 2014, SkySkopes was the first commercial UAS startup in North Dakota to receive FAA exemption status and is the first company in the U.S. to fly a commercial UAS on military property. For more information, visit skyskopes.com.