Welcome to UAViators

UAViators (You-Aviators)

"Humanitarian organizations should engage in initiatives like the Humanitarian UAV Network."
          - United Nations (OCHA) Policy Brief 

With over 2,500 members in 80+ countries, our mission is to promote the safe, coordinated and effective use of UAVs for data collection and cargo delivery in a wide range of humanitarian and development settingsWe do this by developing and championing international guidelines for the responsible use of UAVs. We actively promote operational safety and document lessons learned and best practices. We never self-deploy. We only mobilize at the request of established aid and development partners. We actively promote community engagement & educate UAV operators. We convene Experts Meetings and facilitate information sharing, coordination and learning across all our efforts. Our pilot roster includes 400+ UAV pilots in 60+ countries.

Our objectives are thus five-fold: establish clear standards for the responsible use of UAVs and provide up-to-date regulatory information; document lessons learned and best practices; provide hands-on UAV training; inform UAV deployments after disasters; and catalyze research & information sharing. To pursue these objectives, we co-organized the first ever Humanitarian UAV Experts Meeting at the UN Secretariat and held this meeting again in 2015 at MIT. We taught the first ever Humanitarian UAV training courses in Europethe US and Nepal for humanitarian and development professionals. In addition, we convened a high-level policy forum supported by the Rockefeller Foundation to further develop our international code of conduct. We also joined the Drones in Humanitarian Action research program in 2015. In 2016, we launched WeRobotics to provide professional training and aerial technologies directly to local partners in developing countries.

To get started:

  1. Please sign up (the private site has member-only features).
  2. Complete your profile and Start Here to make the most of your membership.
  3. Join ongoing conversations by adding yourself to the Email-List.
  4. Post announcements to the Forum. Use the email-list instead if you're looking for input.
  5. Read, improve and share our Code of Conduct and Best Practices Guide.
  6. If you're a pilot, please join the Pilot Roster here.

New! Founder Patrick Meier's new TEDx talk on Humanitarian UAVs. See also his book, Digital Humanitarians, which has been praised by experts at Harvard, MIT, Stanford, Oxford, United Nations, Red Cross, Work Bank and more. The book features members of UAViators in action.

Global Forum

First Ever Cargo Drone Deliveries in Amazon Rainforest

WeRobotics just completed the first ever cargo UAV deliveries in the Amazon rainforest. The ~40km flights connected the town of Contamana to the remote village of Pampa Hermosa. The UAV flights took around 35 minutes and were carried out both during the day and at night; delivering life-saving medicines as well as blood samples. Traditional riverboats connecting the two locations can take up to 6 hours of travel time. Big thanks to our Peru Flying Labs team and to the Ministry of Health as well…

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1 Reply · Reply by Graeme Kobayashi Jan 12

Global Drone Regulations Database

In 2014 UAViators started the UAV Travel, Laws, & Regulations Wiki, as an effort to centralize vital information on UAV laws from around the world. Today, we announce the launch of a new repository of global drone regulations, which has been created by FSD and partners as the successor to the original wiki. The database includes summaries of national laws of more than 100 countries with the aim to help better inform drone pilots and stakeholders. Volunteers are encouraged to help further…

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The Most Comprehensive Study on Drones in Humanitarian Action

In August 2015, the Swiss humanitarian organization FSD kindly hired me as a consultant to work on the EU-funded Drones in Humanitarian Action program. I had the pleasure of working closely with FSD and team during the past 16 months. Today represents the exciting culmination of a lot of hard work by many dedicated individuals. Today we’re launching our comprehensive report on “Drones in Humanitarian Action: A Guide to the Use of Airborne Systems in Humanitarian Crises.” More here.

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Help us spread the word: Drones in Humanitarian Action - A guide on the use of air-borne systems in humanitarian crises

Dear all,  We are about to launch a publication "Drones in humanitarian action- A guide to air-borne systems in humanitarian crises". Below is a little teaser video. Please help us spread the word! If you are interested to receive an email with the publication once it is available after December 2nd, you can sign up to the mailing list here: https://goo.gl/forms/uAHubw15fWSqBM8h1  Drones, also known as remotely piloted aircraft systems (RPAS) are becoming increasingly common in the skies. With…

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Rachel Powers posted a discussion in Cargo Team (UPDWG)
A new project by DARPA is looking into the use of one-time-use cardboard gliding drones to deliver medical goods or emergency supplies and then "disappear" via compost. See more on the work here:
DARPA Cardboard Drones
Fabrizio Tondolo is now a member of Humanitarian UAV Network
Zachary and Brenton Douglas Smyth joined Humanitarian UAV Network
Daniel Sanfelice is now a member of Humanitarian UAV Network
Stephanie Sodero updated their profile
Stephanie Sodero is now a member of Humanitarian UAV Network
Cristen Hodgers updated their profile
Cristen Hodgers, Rachael Haensly, Nicholas Mink and 1 more joined Humanitarian UAV Network
Matthias Boyen is now a member of Humanitarian Team
Jan 16
Matthias Hartmann, Heike Würbel, Stuart Smith and 3 more joined Humanitarian UAV Network
Jan 13
Graeme Kobayashi replied to Timo Luege's discussion Repost: Collection of 14 Humanitarian Case Studies
"This is a great collection of studies Timo - really insightful and give those (ie) not aware or involved in these operations but who are interested in them a good understanding of what is involved. Thanks for posting."
Jan 12
Graeme Kobayashi replied to Paul Vermeulen's discussion Nano drones to escape airspace regulations during urgent interventions? in Humanitarian Team
"My biggest concern is using these regulations as a blanket legislation for all scenarios in all locations.  While it may be possible under normal circumstances to be exempt from these regulations in North America in everyday situations, everything c…"
Jan 12
Graeme Kobayashi replied to Patrick Meier's discussion First Ever Cargo Drone Deliveries in Amazon Rainforest
"I am surprised this is the first ever cargo UAV delivery in the Amazon, but it is so great to see that it is such great purpose! Congratulations and looking forward to seeing upcoming progress. With this dedication we will definitely see leaps and b…"
Jan 12
Tom Mueller is now a member of Humanitarian UAV Network
Jan 11
Flavia Ragnacci, Raj Dholakia and Kyaw Zin Win joined Humanitarian UAV Network
Jan 11
Elana Fishman updated their profile
Jan 11