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Slideshow: EAA AirVenture drone showSlideshow: EAA AirVenture drone show

The Great Lakes Drone Company staff spent hundreds of hours preparing for the July 26 night airshow at EAA AirVenture, the first time drones had joined the popular after-dark attraction. AOPA was invited to watch a daytime test session to learn how the show is created from behind the scenes.
  • Photo courtesy of Great Lakes Drone Company.
  • Great Lakes Drone Company Director of Operations Matt Quinn works with staffer Chris Habel to prepare for a July 25 daytime test in Fond du Lac, Wisconsin. Jim Moore photo.
  • Great Lakes Drone Company staffer Christina Martinez adjusts the position of a drone on the ground prior to a test to correct for GPS error. Jim Moore photo.
  • Military surplus ammunition cans are used to store potentially volatile lithium polymer batteries. Jim Moore photo.
  • Creating a drone light show requires a great deal of work, both on maintenance of dozens of aircraft and programming a computer system to control them all. Jim Moore photo.
  • A passing aircraft draws the attention of Great Lakes Drone Company staff preparing for a test. Jim Moore photo.
  • The positions of all drones in the light show are adjusted prior to a test flight. Jim Moore photo.
  • The LED lights mounted on custom drone configurations by the Great Lakes Drone Company are bright, even in daylight. Jim Moore photo.
  • Drones battle windy conditions to create an Eagle during the night airshow at EAA AirVenture in Oshkosh, Wisconsin, on July 25. Photo courtesy of Great Lakes Drone Company.
  • Drones create streaks of light over EAA AirVenture. Photo courtesy of Great Lakes Drone Company.
  • Drones prepare to launch a night show at EAA AirVenture in Oshkosh, Wisconsin. Photo courtesy of Great Lakes Drone Company.
Each drone is programmed with a detailed mission plan, and together they create complex shapes, brightly lit against the night sky. The Great Lakes Drone Company crew also paid a lot of attention to safety, implementing various precautions to ensure a safe and entertaining show.
Topics: EAA AirVenture, Unmanned Aircraft

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