Civil Air Patrol’s South Dakota Wing flew aircraft and drone photography surveys over Ellsworth Air Force Base to document the scene where a B-1 crashed on Jan. 4. Acting in its role as the auxiliary of the Air Force, Civil Air Patrol was tasked by the Air Force Interim Safety Board to fly photography surveys around the area of the crash, which happened as the bomber was attempting to land.
CAP members from around the state participated in a training exercise in Pierre. The mission included air visual and electronic (ELT) search, aircraft to ground team communication, and unmanned photography drone 3D building mapping.
Col. Mike Beason, South Dakota Wing Civil Air Patrol (CAP), was invited to be a member of the first national training class for a new category of photography drone aircraft. CAP uses drones, formally known as small Unmanned Aerial Systems (sUAS), for aerial mapping, damage assessment, and missing person searches. CAP’s new hybrid drones take off and land vertically, like a rotary UAS, but fly like a fixed-wing UAS.
Maj. E.W. Filler, of Big Sioux Composite Squadron, spent two weeks at Nellis AFB in Nevada this month, helping active-duty Air Force personnel train for use of remote-sensing drones.
Two South Dakota Wing members attended CAPs National Emergency Services Academy (NESA) in Indiana for two weeks in June. Both worked with CAP’s small Unmanned Aerial Systems (sUAS), commonly called drones.
CAP has 2,500 aUAS drones nationally. South Dakota Wing did the first-ever actual CAP SAR mission using a drone. The small drones also great for STEM and Aerospace Education.
CAP’s Lincoln County Composite Squadron received drone training from the leader of South Dakota Wing’s small unmanned aerial systems (sUAS) program. Col. Mike Beason.