I recently sent an inquiry to a UAV business owner asking for UAV and software recommendations for someone new to it. I included my budget ($1000) and my industry I currently work in as GIS Analyst where I would like to experiment with this new awesome technology.
Curious to hear from diydrones how valid the following response I received is ?
"1. You need to make yourself aware of the FAA regulations on this sort of application. They more likely than not, would not allow it. The fines are $10,000 and up. Also, if in Texas, there is a state law concerning the use of drones that would impact a pipeline application. The fines here are $1,000 PER PICTURE.
2. We work within the rules and also have considerable liability insurance coverage. We also have licensed pilots on our team that increase the level of safety.
3. For $1,000 about all you could do is take some non-geo video or nice pictures to look at. It is akin to using a Garmin GPS or your iPhone to do GPS mapping. Certainly it can be done, but in terms of quality, you get what you pay for. (Some applications may be OK with that level of quality.) But the consumer products simply do not provide a way of mapping the same way we do with more expensive and professional tools. Otherwise, we would be using them instead! We are doing some R&D using small UAS, but so far, it is like trying to use a shovel to dig a swimming pool when a backhoe is readily available."