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Energy Drone Coalition

Conference Agenda – EDC 2017

7:30 AM - 7:00 PM


Location: Discovery Ballroom Foyer

1:00 PM - 1:10 PM

Summit Welcome Address

Location: Discovery Ballroom

1:10 PM - 2:30 PM

Keynote: Enterprise Ready, Energy Asset Owners UAS Ops Roundtable

Location: Discovery Ballroom

Hear directly from our panel of major energy end users & drone operators from the oil & gas and power markets on how they are building, scaling and integrating UAVs into their energy operations. How far has the drone market developed for energy companies, and what challenges and solutions do we need to get to the next level?

  • Best Practices and Lessons Learned
  • Launching and Scaling Your Energy UAV Ops
  • In-House versus Outsource Drone Operations
  • How Are They Building the Business Case for Management?
  • Insurance / Risk Management
  • Safety, Security and Privacy Issues for ASSURE FAA Center of Excellence for UAS
  • UAVs Near Critical Infrastructure
  • Challenges of Being an Early UAV Adopter

Co-Chair: Jacob Velky, Manager Unmanned Aerial Systems, Duke Energy
Co-Chair & Moderator: Landon Phillips, COO, DataWing Global
Rodney Gaddy, VP Administrative Services, Duke Energy
Richard Murphy, Senior Manager Corporate Aviation Services, Valero

2:30 PM - 3:00 PM

Energy UAVs R&D: Latest FAA Updates from the Centers of Excellence

Location: Discovery Ballroom

Stephen P. Luxion ‘LUX’, Colonel (USAF-Retired), Deputy Director, ASSURE FAA Center of Excellence for UAS

3:00 PM - 6:30 PM


Location: Legends Ballroom

3:00 PM - 3:30 PM

Refreshment Break

Location: Legends Ballroom

3:15 PM - 3:45 PM

Subsea, Surface, Land and Air Solutions via Autonomous Drones / Vessels, ROV's and More | Use Case Session

Location: Legends Ballroom

The future has caught up with the offshore business.

  • Where do YOU stand for the future? Discussions will be lively.
  • We want to connect the Energy Sector to the AUV Market emerging with some vessels that travel up to 9 months or more.
  • Discuss Fast Response vessels that work like a much larger OSV.
  • Discover the value of unmanned aircraft that can provide extensive savings for the offshore/subsea market

Ron Smith, CEO & President, Deep Down, Inc.
John Ferguson, CEO, Saxon Remote Systems

4:00 PM - 5:30 PM

Safety & Mitigating Risks in Energy UAS Ops

Location: Discovery Ballroom

Expert Panel reviewing the latest Safety Standards, SMS-Safety Management Systems & Risk Mitigation Strategies

The ability to safely operate drones in the energy industry is quite possibly the most critical issue for widespread adoption on the enterprise level. Here, you will learn from this panel of experts how this is being done successfully at energy companies around the globe, as well as how different energy companies are building the safety portion of their UAV programs. Within their considerable safety cultures, energy companies are working with drones to reduce human error, improve technology reliability and build safe UAV departments and operations. 

  • How to stand up your SMS, Safety Management Systems
  • Operating Near Critical Infrastructure
    • Coordinating UAV Ops in High Risk Environments
    • Replacing Manned Inspection with Drones Safely
  • Risk Management and Safety Precautions to Minimize Risk Exposure
  • Drone Flight Planning, Processes, and Standard Operating Procedures
  • Standards and Compliance to Insure Safety for UAV Ops as you Scale your Drone Program Beyond the R&D Phase

Chair & Moderator: Josh Olds, VP Operations, Unmanned Safety Institute / ARGUS
Calvin Rieb, Vice President, Helicopter & Unmanned Services, Prism Solutions
Jacob Velky, Manager Unmanned Aerial Systems, Duke Energy
Will Coldwell, Research & Development Director, Consortiq

5:00 PM - 5:30 PM

Holistic Solutions for the Energy Industry | Use Case Session

Location: Legends Ballroom

  • UAS Commercial Applications: Energy Inspections Delivered from a Different Point of View
  • Drone Capability Development: Building an Enterprise Drone Capability from the Ground Up
  • Drone Management System: Improving Safety, Effectiveness and Efficiency of Drone Operations
  • Inspections: Actionable Information Delivered

David Culler, CoFounder and CEO, Hazon Solutions LLC

5:00 PM - 6:00 PM

Big Sky Reception

Location: Legends Ballroom

5:30 PM - 6:00 PM

Low Power Lines Inspection by UAV with Lidar : Use Case Session

Location: Legends Ballroom

Project Review: UAS Ops including Lidar for low power transmission lines in urban/suburban locations

Understand technical and operational requirements for using drones in a electric corridor with high return on investment; review actual operational parameters for successful drone use; learn what works and not to acquire and produce useful information via remote sensing and mapping using drones.

Mike Tully, President & CEO, Aerial Services Inc.

6:00 PM - 6:30 PM

End-to-End Drone Solutions for Powerline inspections: Use Case Session

Location: Legends Ballroom

Key Takeaways include:

  • Analysis of a Large Contract with a Utility: Lessons to Scale Up
  • Details of a Business Model
  • Advanced Data Processing Algorithms Dedicated to Utilities

Benjamin Benharrosh, Co-Founder, Delair-Tech

7:00 AM - 3:00 PM


Location: Discovery Ballroom Foyer

7:30 AM - 3:45 PM


Location: Legends Ballroom

7:30 AM - 8:00 AM

Breakfast & Collaboration Cafe

Location: Legends Ballroom

Enjoy networking with your peers while discussing these topics:

  • Launching, Scaling & Building Your Drone Program
  • Public Acceptance & Trust, Privacy and Safety
  • Data Management & Security
  • Emerging Technology, BVLOS, UTM
  • Open Topic

8:00 AM - 8:30 AM

Commercial Operations, Workflows and New Technologies | Use Case Session

Location: Legends Ballroom

  • Hear from experienced commercial UAS operators on what works
  • View the data workflows from beginning to end
  • See what new tech developments are about to be released for energy drone Ops

Simon Morris, COO, Altus Intelligence

8:30 AM - 9:45 AM

Mega Panel: Public Acceptance & Trust, Risk Perception and Privacy Challenges & Solutions

Location: Discovery Ballroom

The commercial energy UAV industry sees drones as helpful tools for inspection, mapping and related energy operations, while the public sees a concern for privacy and safety as drones are integrated into neighborhoods and near energy facilities.

Industry has a strong interest in gaining public trust as they expand UAVs throughout the enterprise and our panel of energy drone leaders will be sharing how they currently plan UAV Ops and keep the public notified to gain their trust. They will also discuss the very real issues and solutions of balance in public notification versus keeping critical infrastructure information secure.

  • Privacy, Safety, Noise, Community Outreach: How does the drone community gain trust in general, community education?
  • Safety and Technology that Facilitates Public Safety Around UAV Ops
  • Tracking UAVs/Flight Plans
  • Challenges: Critical infrastructure and UAV mission planning, public notification versus infrastructure privacy / safety
  • Rules & Regs, Federal and Local: How do these impact energy UAV operations?
  • Best Practices
  • Methods for Gaining Public Trust

Co-Chair: Hector Ubinas, UAS Program Lead / Aviation Safety Advisor, SDG&E (San Diego Gas & Electric)
Co-Chair: Chuck Johnson, CEO, Global Integrator of UAS
Moderator: Christopher Korody, Founder,
Davis Hackenberg, Deputy Project Manager, UAS Integration in the NAS Project, NASA Armstrong Flight Research Center
Christine Asaro, Project Advisor, UAS Program, San Diego Gas & Electric
Brian B. Kennedy, Associate, Hogan Lovells

9:45 AM - 10:15 AM

Refreshment Break

Location: Legends Ballroom

9:45 AM - 10:15 AM

NUASCP - National UAS Credentialing Program : Use Case Session

Location: Legends Ballroom

How can credentialing help for energy company UAS Ops?

  • How does your UAS Service Provider set themselves apart from all others?
  • Does your UAS Service Provider have a company safety culture imbedded in their operations?
  • How does using a National UAS Credentialing Program provider help your organization meet your safety requirements?

Steve Williams, Director of Operations and Strategic Development, TEEX: Texas A&M Engineering Extension Service

10:15 AM - 11:15 AM

UAS Operations: Building The Business Case for the Energy Enterprise

Location: Discovery Ballroom

The adoption of drones and UAVs into energy operations at the enterprise level is happening right now. How are the energy companies who utilize drones for inspection, mapping and surveying projects building their business case for unmanned versus manned technology? Which of the key metrics surrounding safety, efficiency, costs and time are being tracked to create the business case for management

Our experts will share how they are building the business case, which metrics matter and how scaling to enterprise level UAV operations are making a difference for their energy operations.

  • We know what UAVs can do, but how can drones save money?
  • Learn the Explicit Connections
  • Determine the Key Metrics to Help Determine your ROI
  • Hear Specific Comparisons of Manned versus Unmanned Inspections
  • Building the Case for UAS versus Traditional Operations / Technologies
  • Building Energy Drone Business Case and Justifications: Understand how you will save money, lives and time
  • Real World Data Analytics: How many lives might UAS Ops save?
  • How much time is being saved by utilizing unmanned vs manned technology?
  • Costs and Hard Data: Financial perspective to management
  • Which tools to use to justify, industry trends, data sets of value comparison

Chair & Speaker: Jason Klenklen, Transmission Maintenance Supervisor, Westar Energy
Moderator: Dave Lafferty, Founder, Scientific Technical Services
Dyan Gibbens, Founder, Trumbull Unmanned
Mitch Droz, Commercial Development Manager, Puget Sound Energy

11:15 AM - 12:15 PM

UAS Emerging Technology for Energy: Updates & Use Cases

Location: Discovery Ballroom

While there are a myriad of new technologies that will impact and improve drone adoption into energy operations, there are 2 critical areas that will make the biggest difference in how quickly UAVs can make major strides in the marketplace: BVLOS and UAV Airspace Integration.

Our drone industry leaders will explore where we stand today, how the technology is evolving and where it is headed tomorrow. You will learn specifically how these evolving technologies will enable the energy enterprise to grow UAV operations.

  • BVLOS: What’s On the Horizon
    • Pathfinder 1, Update Panel
      • PrecisionHawk
      • FAA
      • BNSF
      • Mitre (LD-CAP)
  • UAV Airspace Integration in the US
    • UTM
    • NASA / FAA Updates
    • Integrating Commercial Drones into the NAS, National Airspace System

Chair & Moderator: Diana Marina Cooper, VP of Legal and Policy Affairs, PrecisionHawk
Jeff Breunig, Principal, Navigation & Unmanned Aircraft Systems, MITRE Center For Advanced Aviation System Development
Catherine Bramlett, UAS Program, Operations Manager, BNSF Railway
Marke "Hoot" Gibson, Senior Advisor, Unmanned Aircraft Systems (UAS) Integration, FAA
Davis Hackenberg, Deputy Project Manager, Integration for the Unmanned Aircraft Systems (UAS) Integration, National Airspace System (NAS) Project at Armstrong Flight Research Center, NASA

12:15 PM - 12:45 PM

UAV Forensics and Analysis, What You Do After You Detect and Neutralize a Malicious UAV: Use Case Session

Location: Legends Ballroom

  • There is a wealth of tactical and strategic information available from the malicious UAV and its ground control application
  • Collection and analysis is not as difficult or as expensive as you might imagine
  • How you can answer the who, what, where, why, when of UAVs found on your site

David Kovar, Founder / CEO, Kovar & Associates

12:15 PM - 1:15 PM

Lunch Buffet

Location: Legends Ballroom

12:45 PM - 1:15 PM

UAV Mapping: Photogrammetry or Lidar? : Use Case Session

Location: Legends Ballroom

  • Evolution of Photogrammetry and Lidar Sensors
  • Difference between Blanket surface (Photogrammetry) and Bare Earth (Lidar) Surface
  • Expected Accuracies between Photogrammetry and Lidar
  • Case Studies: When should traditional survey be replaced with UAV Operations

Ryan Fuselier, Operations Leader-AT, C.H. Fenstermaker & Associates

1:15 PM - 2:15 PM

Regulations / SOPs / Certifications / Compliance Roundtable: Building Consensus for Energy Enterprise Growth

Location: Discovery Ballroom

With drone use increasing daily around energy critical infrastructure, the need for quality SOPs (Standard Operating Procedures) and current certification standards to ensure compliance and success in UAV operations is vital.

These procedures and best practices are being developed within individual companies who have adopted UAVs for their energy inspection, mapping and surveying projects, as well as industry associations and regulatory agencies.

Our panel of leaders from throughout the oil & gas, power and drone industries represent the key stakeholders for the end user and regulatory compliance communities, and they will discuss the emerging framework of rules and procedures, as well as examine the overlap or gaps and how to best bridge these for the future.


  • What is available today for SOPs, and what is just on the horizon?
    • Best practices for building SOPs in energy company operations
  • Bridging the gap between US,and Global Standards
  • What is the process and costs to stay certified for the future?
    • What are the latest updates and status for:
      • IOGP
      • HSAC
      • API
      • FAA








Chair: Todd Chase, Global Unmanned Systems Program Manager, Oceaneering
Moderator: Jay Forte, Vice President Operations, Sky-Futures
Dyan Gibbens, Founder, Trumbull Unmanned
Jerry Byrum, Aviation Safety Inspector -- Flight Standards Division, FAA
Suzanne M. Lemieux, UAS Lead and Manager, API
Bill Majeau, Standards & Safety Chairman, HSAC &, Director of Safety, Westwind Helicopters, Inc.

2:15 PM - 3:15 PM

UAV Counter Measures and Physical Security Threats & Solutions

Location: Discovery Ballroom

Drones are both a helpful industry tool and a serious operational threat factor for critical energy infrastructure. Whether it is a hobbyist flight error or a calculated commercial weaponized attack, countermeasures and planning are vital to protect your energy infrastructure.

Our experts will be reviewing the current threat analysis, best practices and technology available for protecting your energy facility from drones.

  • Protecting Critical Infrastructure: Identifying and mitigating physical threats
  • Monitoring and Countermeasure Concepts: Detection, recognition, threat analysis
  • Rational and usable solutions that take industry’s concerns and operations into account for counter drone

Chair & Moderator: Travis Moran, Managing Consultant, Navigant Consulting Inc.
Bruce Martin, Enterprise Security Director, Duke Energy
David Kovar, Founder, Kovar & Associates
Carl Herron, Principal Critical Infrastructure Physical Security Adviser, NERC (E-ISAC)

3:15 PM - 3:45 PM

Afternoon Refreshment Break

Location: Legends Ballroom

3:15 PM - 3:45 PM

Drones for Next-Gen Oil & Gas Facility Protection: UAV Technology Sniffing for Leaks, Surveying Operations and Protecting the Environment: Use Case Session

Location: Legends Ballroom

Multinational energy corporations are investing in drone maintenance and surveillance, and are also considering the unique risks drone hardware and batteries poses to the physical infrastructure of oil and gas facilities. Wherever a drone operates to support a structure’s safety program, there must also be a security procedure to ensure proper use and entry of drones in the airspace.

Additional takeaways will answer these key questions:

  • What are the risks involved with unauthorized drones in critical airspace?
  • How can energy companies create a secure network of drones, when there are no fences available for airspace?
  • What are the costs and considerations of shutdowns when a rogue drone enters the airspace of an energy facility, and how can these costs be avoided through early detection and intervention?

Why attend? If you are using a drone, you need to know the risks of unsecured airspace and why you need to detect all drones, whether they are approved for maintenance and surveying programs, or rogue.

Bobby Long, Vice President of Sales, Dedrone

3:45 PM - 4:45 PM

Data Security & Management / Cybersecurity for UAV Operations

Location: Discovery Ballroom

Drones offer a significant leap forward in data collection from throughout energy operations globally. With real-time, high quality data from a myriad of hardware and sensor payload combinations, together with multiple communication streams and software applications, drones and the data they collect for energy stakeholders create a serious threat to data security and potential entry point for cybersecurity issues.

Our panel of data security experts will discuss the current threats for drone data security, as well as the best practices and solutions for data management to identify and reduce the threat to critical infrastructure within the energy industry.

Discussions will include:

  • Hardware, Software and Communications: Threats and issues from throughout the drone operation
  • Who owns / controls the data?
  • Third Party Issues and Solutions
  • The Legal Aspect: Who gets access to data in the cloud or from third party services?
  • Controls and Countermeasures: No device is 100% secure
  • Security: Company culture that will prevent issues now, not later
  • Business Strategy Behind Data Collection and Security
  • Hacking: What can be done to detect and reduce the cyber attacks to drone collected data?

Chair: Lisa Ellman, Partner, Hogan Lovells, Co-Executive Director, Commercial Drone Alliance
Moderator: Christopher Korody, Founder,
David Kovar, Founder, Kovar & Associates
Steven Fargo, CEO, DataWing
Brian B. Kennedy, Associate, Hogan Lovells