Unmanned Aircraft Systems (UAS) for very low level (VLL) airspace are established cost effective systems enabling novel applications and business cases. The operation of such drones touches several fields such as the complex technology of the UAS itself but also payloads for specific applications, flight control, mission planning, air traffic control and legal regulation. Real world case studies in this domain are ideal for problem based learning. 

UAS technology by itself is extremely broad. It comprises e.g. embedded systems (flight controllers), control engineering, sensors, power electronics, remote control, telemetry as well as computer vision for navigation and machine learning. 

In fact a drone is a component in a larger distributed system. Application specific payloads open further universes of interesting challenges, be them imaging systems such as RGB, hyperspectral or thermal cameras, radars, laser scanners or actuators for physical interactions, to name a few. Application examples are remote sensing for earth observation, structural health monitoring, surveillance, precision agriculture or transport of cargo and passengers. 

Having passed this module students are aware of the significance of UAS. They are able to assess technology and applications. They know the fundamental principles and components of a drone. They are able to integrate simple systems and to operate them. They have shaped their skills in embedded systems, control engineering and application development. 

Flight controllers (FC) as control systems 

Remote control and communication protocols 

Mission planning and automated flight 

Companion computer (CC) and on-board computing

Sensor integration and computer vision 

Remote sensing and application development