Sky-Futures, a global provider of unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) oil and gas inspections, has approved three new remote pilots, including the first two for Sky-Futures USA.
Qualifications have also been awarded to three inspection engineers, who have all completed the inspection engineer camera operator course. Sky-Futures' extensive, in-house training course includes ground school, flight training and industry-specific inductions.
The company, which has a commercial exemption from the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), says its new U.S. team members join the Houston office, which is headed by Jay Forte, vice president of operations.
“Following Sky-Futures’ 333 Exemption from the FAA earlier this year and the opening of our Houston office in March, we have been growing the team in order to support the expected growth in operations in the largest, potential, single-source marketplace for Sky-Futures service,” comments Forte. “We are pleased to welcome two new experienced and ambitious remote pilots to the team, alongside an inspection engineer with over eight years’ experience.”
Sky-Futures was the third UAV operating company to be awarded U.K. Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) National Qualified Entity status in the U.K. and enables the company to train prospective remote pilots to a CAA-approved competency level for visual-line-of-sight UAV operations.
Nick Rogers, Sky-Futures’ chief regulatory and training officer, adds, “All of our newly trained remote pilots and inspection engineers come from a range of backgrounds and industries where they have already gained many of the skills required in order to be a successful remote pilots and camera operators in the oil and gas industry.
“Our training center further develops the remote pilots’ flying skills by testing their skills on facilities that replicate the challenging, real-world inspection scenarios that they will find working at oil and gas facilities onshore and offshore.”
Sky-Futures, a member of the Small UAV Coalition, says it has a footprint of over 30 clients globally and works in over 10 countries across five regions of the world. The business is headquartered in London, with offices in Houston; Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia; and Aberdeen, Scotland.
The company has also recently been the recipient of several investments, including from Airware's Commercial Drone Fund and MMC Ventures.
Erik Ekes (center left), receiving his inspection engineer camera operator certificate from David Hunkin, operations director