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Professor Jim Jordan receives drone pilot license, specialized research drones

Jim Jordan, chair and professor in the Department of Earth and Space Sciences, received his FFA drone pilot’s Jordan Dronelicense in February and can now train students to be drone pilots.

“With my encouragement, two students did become certified recently,” said Jordan. “I will be Pilot in Command for future training of students. The training will include the expectations for passing the FAA certification for drone pilots.”

The Department of Earth and Space Sciences has three drones, that must have an FAA drone certified pilot present. The drones are operated for geospatial research out of the geology building and can be equipped with a variety of payloads the department has, including cameras and sensors.

Drone Pic“The drones are capable of extensive research in environmental geology, mineral discoveries, plant health and a variety of other uses,” said Jordan. “The capabilities of the drones range from mapping and methane gas detection, roof leakage detection, thermal anomaly detection and economic mineral deposits.

Ed Hogenson, a former plant manager at Texaco, whose son graduated from the Department of Geology at LU, made a generous donation for the purchase of two of the drones.