Join Drone U for an Accident Scene Reconstruction Training at the
 NTSB Training Center
  • Date: September 24th - 27th, 2019 - Accident Scene Mapping Training
  • ​September 23rd - Optional Flight Mastery Training
Accident Reconstruction Using Drones
Acquisition Strategy and Processing with Pix4D
  • ​During this 4-day Hands-on  Drone Mapping training, students will not only learn the intricacies of photogrammetry processing, but also fly simulated accident scenes and crash sites at the NTSB Training Academy. These exercises will allow pilots to hone their flight skills and photogrammetry skills, while learning the intricacies of processing accident scenes using Pix4D. Participants will have a fun but challenging opportunity to learn to map extremely complex environments and subjects.
  • ​Accident Reconstruction mapping poses many problems for even the most experienced drone pilots familiar with photogrammetry. Accident reconstruction is generally a high-pressure environment and must be done with limited time available and without failure due to the nature of the situation, which often requires data be acquired quickly in order to maintain the scene after it has been cleaned up. In addition, pilots flying these missions often face various obstacles such as reflective surfaces and potentially the need to bypass terrestrial imagery. 
  • ​This training will provide a systematic approach to mapping accident scenes, maintaining the evidence chain and troubleshooting the processing of maps. Students will fly real-world practical flight missions to practice mapping an accident scene while flying at the NTSB training academy. 
  • ​This unique training will allow students to map in the NTSB’s “boneyard,” of plane crashes from around the country.
  • ​This training will include multiple missions that will challenge the students ability to create thermal maps, conduct thermal search and rescue missions and determine hot spots in accident scenes. 
Four Days of Training as follows:
  • Day 1:  We'll go into the Intricacies of Photogrammetry using Pix4D Software.
  • Day 2: We'll guide students through practical missions including:
  • i. A Simulated Plane Crash
  • ii. A Jet Crash Scene
  • iii. Search and Rescue Mapping for  Orthomosaics and Autonomous Search
  • Day 3: NTSB Instructor deep dives into processing specifics to accident scene reconstruction and deliverables.
  • Day 4: Students will be tasked with multiple missions that will challenge their ability to create thermal maps, conduct thermal search and rescue missions and determine hot spots in accident scenes.
More Information and What to Expect to Learn
The first day of processing will focus on providing and practicing workflows to take images captured from a camera on a drone or terrestrial camera to create 3d models and 2d maps. The day will be split between lecture and hands on exercises. We will set the stage in the lecture through developing an understanding of what the software is producing in the background, further demystifying the science of photogrammetry.
Students will then apply processing concepts learned in lecture by processing vehicular collision examples within the software, processing projects, importing ground control points and exporting data products.
On Day two, students will travel between the NTSB “boneyard,” and the training grounds on George Washington University’s campus. Using real world challenges, students will be presented with obstacles outside of just flying drones and mapping. 

Exercise #1: Students will recreate a crashed general aviation plane and showcase the important findings of the crash site.  Students will be using RTK D-GPS to correct the data and learn how to accurately recreate the crash scene. 

Exercise #2: Map a search scene littered with false positives and potential humans. Students will learn how to map this area, how to create plans to map larger areas to find people and how to process imagery to be scanned by Loc8 software to autonomously search for human life. 

Exercise #3: Map a jet crashed into a building (simulated). Cover the area, map with aerial imagery and terrestrial imagery and document the flight path with video. Students will learn concepts to ensure redundancy in image acquisition and learn how to accurately map this crash. 

Additional Exercises: Thermal SAR, Helicopter Mapping and More (see below) 
The third day will focus on processing datasets captured the previous day, maximizing our time within the software and limiting lecture time. 

Using the data sets captured the previous day, and the concepts we learned on Day 1, we will process, edit and export these data products. In addition, we will use these datasets to expand on topics such as merging projects, understanding the Pix4D quality report, and navigating the Pix4D Processing Options and Deliverables. 

● Processing Imagery to create a point cloud
● Understand Accuracy and Reports of Point Clouds
The fourth day will include additional practical exercises that are specific to first responders and investigators.  Students will be tasked with multiple missions that will challenge their ability to create thermal maps, conduct thermal search and rescue missions and determine hot spots in accident scenes.  The focus of the additional day is to add new sensors to the mapping platform to showcase additional uses of drones for public safety.
These new missions will add significant value to LEO's as they will learn:

Search and Rescue
 - With thermal (24 hour window)
 - With Photography (Posting Missing 24+ Hours) 

 - Hot Spot Detection (Human and Hazard Detection) 
 - Radiometric Thermography mapping 

Join us for a participants only Meet-Up:
  • Date: Tuesday, September 24th, 2019
  • Time: 5:30PM
  • Location: Bungalow Lakehouse (located just east of the NTSB training facility)
  • ​Drone U will provide instructional guides (FORMS) for each mapping mission to provide step by step instructions to help students map each area. Students will also be provided with instructions to accurately calibrate their drones and prepare for the mapping acquisition.
Student Requirements:
  • ​Each student must bring their own UAV
  • ​Each student must bring a Windows based computer (recommended specs located HERE)
Optional Flight Mastery Class - Monday, September 23, 2019

Additional Drone U Flying Training:
Not confident in your flying skills?

Drone U will host an additional day of training and host the Flight Mastery Course, which is based on our obstacle course built from 12 exercises designed to help students build confidence in their ability to fly and make educated decisions in flight. This course will focus on individual flight movements that aid in the development of a firm foundation of flight knowledge and experience.
  • ​Rules of take off and landing.
  • ​Eliminating Interference.
  • ​Flying in Attitude Mode.
  • ​Emergency Maneuvers in Flight.
  • ​Proximity Flight.
Have questions? Email us @