THURSDAY 16TH NOVEMBER 2017 - Draft agenda subject to change

Early speakers include:

  • Jon Damush,  Vice President and General Manager, Insitu Commercial
  • Alessandro Bedin,  Managing Director, RIGOCAL Engineering
  • Steve Armitage,  IT Futures Manager, Heathrow (Provisional)
  • David Jones,  CEO, Rescue Global
  • Russell Woolford,  Assistant Operations Director, National Lead of UAS + NPAS, National Police Air Force (Pending approval)
  • Barry Koperberg, Founder & General Manager, Wings for Aid
  • Ole Kristensen, Chief Superintendent, Danish National Police
  • Chris Blackford, Co-founder and COO, Sky-Futures
  • Lucy England, Senior Associate Lawyer, Bird & Bird
  • Christopher Thomson, Sales Manager, SenseFly
  • Senior Representative, Thales
  • John Molberg, International UAS Business Development, Lockheed Martin
  • Charbel Aoun, Non-executive Director, Future Cities Catapult
  • Andrew Gosney, Head of Delivery - Data Management, Network Rail
  • Joni Pelham, Research Fellow in Flight Data, School of Aerospace, Transport & Manufacturing, University of Cranfield
  • Dr. Bernd Korn, Head of Department of Pilot Assistance, German Aerospace Centre (DLR)
  • Steven Eglinton, Director, Geoenable
  • John Laughlin, Senior Advisor, Nesta
  • Michael Read, VP Sales & Customer Delivery, Martin Aircraft Company
  • James Dunthorne, UAV Technical Manager, Plowman Craven
  • Britta Classen, Team lead UAV Delivery & Parcelcopter, DHL (Preliminary Confirmation)
  • Mohamed Hafez, Aerial Solution Engineer and Mechanical Engineer, Costain Group PLC
  • Peter Slater, Technology Implementation Lead, Costain Group PLC
  • Steve Tisseyre, Detective Constable, National Police Advisor on Drones, National Prisons Intelligence Coordination Centre
  • Joe Little, Technology Principal - Digital Innovation Organisation, BP
  • Ravi Kugananthan, Project Engineer - Tunnels and Platforms, Laing O'Rourke Infrastructure
  • Sorin Dumitrescu, Department Manager, Location Identification & Reporting, Petrom SA
  • Alan Drinkwater, Managing Director, Eclipse Digital Solutions
  • Dr John Barlow, Lecturer in Applied Geomorphology, University of Sussex
  • Paul Bennett, RPAS Technical Delivery Manager, Serco UK Central Government
  • Martin Rowe-Willcocks, Head of Sales – Future Programmes & Services, BAE Systems
  • Phil Binks, Solutions Architect, NATS
  • Dr. Colm Jordan, Team Leader: Earth & Planetary Observation & Monitoring, British Geological Survey ( Provisional )
  • Hannah Nobbs, Head of UAVs, Royal National Lifeboat Institution 
  • Senior Representative, LitterDrone


09:10 Opening Keynote: Enabling safe commercial BVLOS and defining the future of the drone industry
• Designing an air traffic management system that will allow for widely used BVLOS operations
• What are the obstacles between where we are now and universal BVLOS?
• Who has a license; how successful have their flights been; what results can you expect?
• What you need to consider: Security threats, potential disasters, liability

09:30 Identifying the reasons that the industry is stagnating
• Why are companies not willing to invest fully in UAVs?
• Finding the pockets of stagnation and encouraging innovation
• Identifying where there is need and implementing solutions
• How can we encourage steady and continuous growth?

09:50 How to make the most by using real-time data from UAVs
• Which industries could be helped by real-time data?
• How real-time data is being used in agriculture
• Access to timely, accurate information to increase operational efficiency
• Will processing platforms become obsolete?

10:10 Customer insights panel: What are the challenges in entering the UAV market?
• When will UAVs with high payload capabilities become more widely available on a smaller budget?
• What are the alternatives to using UAVs whilst saving money in the workplace?
• Why are UAVs more cost-effective in certain industries than others at present?
• What lessons can be learned from previous investments in emerging technology?

10:40 Morning networking break
• Exhibition viewing


11:20 Protecting your customer’s privacy when collecting and using data
• Knowing your rights and where the boundary is
• What levels of permission do you need to seek before collecting data?
• How can you use the data you have collected in public airspace?
• Examples of how you can protect privacy in your datasets

11:40 AI and Machine learning for UAVs: What is the potential value of investing?
• Potential safety and operational performance benefits
• Applications of AI in commercial UAV use
• What are the benefits of using AI platforms with drones?
• How will machine learning transform the next generation of drones?

12:00 Developing universal standards across the UAV industry
• How will adopting standards help bring new market entrants?
• Who should be involved in the creation of standards?
• Why there is a need today in order to grow tomorrow
• How should regulators be involved from the initial stages?


11:20  Innovative and creative uses of drones in the construction industry: Transferrable lessons
• How have changes in regulation and advances in technology changed how UAVs are used in construction?
• What does UAV use mean for training staff?
• What kind of data can you get from a drone?
• What does adoption look like for organisations of different scales?

11:40  How are drones becoming more autonomous?
• What foundations are being laid today that will lead to a system of fully automated drones in the future?
• Will we ever be able to remove the human element from UAV control?
• What is the newest software that will lead the way to autonomy?

12:00 What is the importance of safety management systems for UAVs?
• How are safety management systems developed?
• What are the standards that have been created across industries?
• What are the risks if your organisation does not have a safety management system in place?
• Finding an inspiring way to promote safety


11:20  How will unmanned aircraft change the future of transport?
• When do companies hope to see pilotless planes in commercial use?
• What impact will pilotless planes have on the way people travel?
• Can we expect widespread adoption? How can we measure and improve public trust?
• How prepared are the regulatory systems?

11:40  UAVs and pilotless planes developing in tandem
• How are developments in the UAV industry feeding innovation in pilotless planes?
• What software platforms are benefitting both UAVs and pilotless planes?
• How can UAVs and pilotless planes be used as an autonomous air force

12:00  Integrating pilotless planes into national airspace
• How will airspace management systems need to adapt?
• What are the main regulatory barriers?
• What are the possibilities of using pilotless planes?
• How will pilotless planes interact with UAVs?


12:20 Unmanned aircraft for autonomous accident investigation
Joni Pelham, Research Fellow in Flight Data, School of Aerospace, Transport & Manufacturing, University of Cranfield

12:40 What is the role of drones in smart cities?
• What are the challenges and opportunities of UAVs in smart cities?
• What are the main uses for UAVs in the future city?
• UAVs for traffic and pollution monitoring
• How will regulations have to be adapted to encompass the use of UAVs in urban airspace?

13:00 What is the future of drone use in mining and aggregates?
• How the data collected by drones can be a huge advantage
• How UAV use is transforming surveying on site
• How are UAVs improving efficiency?
• What are the cost benefits of using UAVs across large land areas?


12:20  Swarms of drones for harvesting: How UAV fleets could be used to solve global food shortages
• Answering one of the greatest demands of humanity with robotics
• How can UAVs be used to perform tasks that humans can’t?
• Who is investigating projects like this already?
• How can UAVS use in harvesting be translated to your industry?

12:40  Big data collection in preparation for crisis and disaster response operations
• How can UAVs be used to collect data useful in crisis operations?
• UAVs for prevention as well as response
• Sourcing and selecting the most useful data
• How can you crowd source data with UAVs?

13:00  Surviving the extremes: Protecting UAVs in testing weather conditions
• Adapting your UAV for extreme weather conditions e.g. hot/cold climates
• Advanced casing for all-terrains
• What are the most recent developments in meteorology technology?


12:20  How are UAVs changing the way television is filmed?
• What are the cost efficiencies of using UAVs over other airborne equipment?
• Examples of shots UAVs can provide that are otherwise unobtainable
• New ways of recording without disturbing the environment
• How are these changes impacting other media industries?

12:40  How can UAVs be used to forecast weather?
• Average weather monitors give a 13-minute warning of extreme weather; how can UAVs be used to track in real-time?
• What sensors can be used in tandem with UAVs?
• Can current drone hardware withstand extreme weather conditions effectively?
• What are the arguments for use?

13:00  The advantages and challenges of UAV and UGV Teaming
• How can UAVs and UGVs cover areas together that they would not be able to independently?
• What navigation systems will these teams rely on?
• How much of a necessity is a human input?
• Which sectors are most likely to benefit? Who can use it now?

13:20 Networking lunch & exhibition visit

14:20 Improving UAV design for the commercial industry
• Will we ever be able to eliminate the human pilot?
• What are the biggest innovations in design likely to be in the next 5 years?
• Who is leading the way in UAV innovation? Commercial or military?
• What are the best ways to nurture innovation? How can you hear your customer’s needs?

14:40 Drone control systems based on high speed communication
• Creating a network that only the drone and pilot are operating on to limit interruption
• How will this improve the likelihood of authorised BVLOS operations?
• Integrating control systems into a ‘smart drone’ platform
• What are the use cases for this? Examples from the field

15:00 Where will pilotless planes fit into the unmanned industry?
• How far away is this future of unlimited aerial mobility?
• What are the roadblocks to adoption? Are they the same as with UAVs?
• Improving the public level of trust in unmanned aviation
• Where are pilotless planes already taking off?

15:20 Venture capital perspectives & Startup innovation pitches
Our selected entrants from the Commercial UAV Awards will each be given 5 minutes to pitch their products to a collection of potential investors and the audience




  The Commercial UAV Show Logo

The Commercial UAV Show is two events: a world-class conference focused on the progression of the UAV industry; and, a technology exhibition showcasing the latest hardware and software innovations from the mega tech companies to the latest start-ups. To visit the show is free. There is, naturally, a registration fee to attend the conference.

phone: +44 (0)207 092 1154