Forums Forums General Discussion Aerial Photography Proposal – Franklin Site ONLY

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  • Brian Dickensdickensbrian
    Post count: 48

    Hey Everyone,

    My name’s Brian Dickens.  I’ve been speaking with Drew Rutledge about the possibility of capturing aerial photography during events held at the Franklin site.

    I am a FAA-Licensed Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (UAV) pilot and have been flying for close to 4 years.  I would like to see if there is an interest and formally inquire about the possibility of shooting aerial photos and videos at the Franklin site.

    As a licensed UAV operator, the FAA requires that certain rules be met before flying at an event(s) such as this.  Here are the rules:

    • Flights must be conducted below an altitude of 400 FT AGL (Actual Ground Level)
    • Flights must be conducted between after 30 minutes before sunrise and 30 after sunset
    • Flights cannot fly over people not directly related to the event
    • Flights in controlled-airspace must have prior approval from the Control Tower

    Attached to this post is a Google Maps image of the Franklin site.  I’ve placed to highlighted boxes on the map indicating where I would like to request to have permission to operate the UAV.  As you will see, the two boxes are located outside the tarmac, away from the spectator viewing area, away from the staging area, and away from typical worker stations (speaking strictly from observations from attending previous events)

    Due to the proximity to the Asheville Regional Airport and the timing of the scheduled events at the AG Center,  I will not be able to conduct flights at that location.

    The Franklin area is in a Class E airspace from 700ft AGL and up.  Flights below 400ft AGL do not require approval.

    If approved, I will be insuring the flights at the Franklin site using VeriFly.  They are a drone Insurance company that allows you to insure individual flights based off your geographical location and flight times.  It provides Liability Insurance up to $10 Million

    I’ve also attached a copy of my UAV license for your records.

    Please let me know if you have any questions or concerns!

    Thanks everyone!



  • Cameron AlbeaCameron Albea
    Post count: 533

    That sounds awesome! I know I’d love to see some video of the events via drone. I’m not involved with the leadership of the club anymore, but I’d fully support something like this. I know the last time someone tried to do drone video at our event (the NCAC event we hosted,) it was brought to our attention that the SCCA requires some form of insurance for these activities, but seeing as you already have that base covered, that shouldn’t be much of an issue.

    Hope to see you out there sometime!

  • Erich BaumgartnerErichB
    Post count: 76

    I’m with Cameron. I fully support the aerial footage of our events. Our club is in serious need of some fresh, new media and footage for our site and Facebook.

    The location you’ve marked out will work with no issues. We’ve had one other guy with a quadcopter at an event in Franklin, and I believe he flew over the entire grassy area, not just limited to those two sections. We have everyone who is on-site sign a waiver form. Technically, everyone who is on the property is part of the event, whether they are racing or not. They are all held to the same rules.

    Most quadcopters have very wide-angle recording, so I’m not sure what kind of footage you’ll get from that distance of the lot.

    Honestly, I’m fine with you flying anywhere over the property. It’s clear you’ve done your research regarding the liability and licensing. I’m not getting the impression that you’re just some random guy with a quadcopter and a youtube channel. I’d love to have some nice, stabilized footage from directly over the course, and some low-slung shots a few feet off the pavement (hovering around a turn or worker station).

    If there was a problem with the quadcopter (battery dying, or some sort of failure), we can always red flag and stop the event for a minute until it’s landed and removed. We’ve red-flagged for way more dangerous situations than a 2 pound flying camera having to land on the pavement.

    I’m sure there will be more discussion around this, as there has been opposition to flight over the course before. Either way, I’ve got no issue with what you’ve proposed. We’re glad to have you.

  • Brian Dickensdickensbrian
    Post count: 48

    Thanks Cameron and Erich!  I’m really excited to be able to share this with the community!

    The model drone I’ll be flying is the Phantom 4 Professional.  It is equipped with a 1 inch sensor capable of capturing images at 20MP and 4K video at 60 fps or 1080p at 120 fps.  The camera is attached to a three axis gimbals which helps stabilize the camera.  Flight time is generally 25-30 minutes per battery charge.

    It is also equipped with forward, backward, side, and downward sensors that are used for collision avoidance and helping the drone orient itself with its surroundings.  If an obstruction is detected in it’s flight path, the drone will either take evasive action to avoid the obstruction or come to a complete stop and hover.  The drone also takes a picture of it’s take off location and marks the location with GPS.  In the event the drone loses signal for whatever reason, the drone will automatically return to to it’s take off site and automatically land.

    The top speed of the drone is 30 MPH and has the capability of identifying objects and “tracking” them.  This essentially keeps the camera focused on the object at all times and then automatically maneuvers the drone to keep the object in frame allowing me to concentrate on flying the craft.

    By flying along the edge of the tarmac, I think we would be able to capture some pretty amazing shots as the cars run along the course.  We would be able to keep the drone at a lower altitude since there are often no people in that area.

    Looking forward to seeing everyone at the track in a few days!

  • mattschildsmattschilds
    Post count: 20

    Is the video posted anywhere?

  • Brian Dickensdickensbrian
    Post count: 48

    I’ve posted one of the videos here on my Instagram account:

    If this link doesn’t work, I can work on getting it uploaded to YouTube as well!

  • Keith YoungTEAMEFFORT
    Post count: 1416

    That’s Awesome!

  • mattschildsmattschilds
    Post count: 20


    Thanks for the link.

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