Drone or UAS or UAV?

Drone or UAS or UAV?

One of the most frequent questions we get asked is what is the difference between a UAS, UAV and a drone.

Well the simple answer is they are interchangeable terms used to describe an aircraft with no pilot that is controlled remotely.

Everyone has heard of drones. Most days there are news stories about drones being purchased for personal use and concerns regarding safety, drone racing is becoming more popular and TV and film show drones being used by the military for spying or bombing missions.

So what are UAV and UASs?

UAV stands for Unmanned Aerial Vehicle and describes any aircraft that is controlled by a remote control.

For professional companies like ours, we use the term Unmanned Aircraft System or UAS when describing our services. So we take our UAV and add additional equipment to it. For example, add a camera and we can photograph and video, add a thermal imaging camera and we can do thermal surveys, add photogrammetry capability and we can offer 3D topographical surveys. The UAV is simply the means to get up high, add associated support equipment to capture data and it becomes a system (UAS).