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Heat Target Mystery Solved

Heat Target Mystery Solved

Last night I was flying at a Hazmat scene when we discovered what looked like the heat signature of a person wandering into the scene. Two of them in fact.

What made the situation difficult was I was unable to fly further forward to get a closer look and the general scene was too dark to see clearly with the visual camera. Sometimes we just have to deal with the best we can get.

One big problem with the UAS operations at night is when you have to rely on the FLIR camera to identify objects. There are a lot of warm or hot things out there in the real world.

I went back today and hunted all over for the odd heat target. Well, it turns out that targets 1 and 2 were actually hot streetlights on top of poles. Target 3 was a storm drain.

It was frustrating when we got someone to walk to target 1 last night and no matter how we directed them they could not see the target. And at the time I thought it was odd they were not passing in front of the target.

Now we know why. The target was not on the ground yet in the 2D controller screen view you could not see that clearly.

About Steve Rhode

Steve is an experienced and certificated UAS pilot and aircraft instrument rated pilot. He is also the Chief Pilot with the Wake Forest Fire Department and North Carolina Public Safety Drone Academy.
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