I am an FAA certified commercial drone pilot. Here in the Center for Spatial Reasoning & Policy (CSRPA) Analytics, we use a state-of-the-art unmanned aerial system for fieldwork in Phoenix and beyond. The Ebee is a fixed-wing platform with a span of 96 cm that weighs approximately 0.70 kg with a radio link range of 3 km and an onboard 18.2 megapixel camera. The Ebee maintains a cruising speed between 11 and 25 meters per second (i.e., 25-56 mph). In ideal flight conditions, the Ebee has a maximum flight time of 50 minutes and can cover about 12 square kilometers in a single flight. However, in Phoenix, where the heat is omnipresent, both the flight time and maximum area covered are reduced to about 40 minutes and 9.5 square kilometers. The Ebee is capable of acquiring oblique imagery between 0 and 50 degree inclination, while achieving a ground sampling distance of 1.5 cm per pixel.
Team CSRPA: Jake Nelson, Brian-the-Dog, Tony Grubesic, Alyssa Chamberlain, Dani Wallace (not pictured).
UAV derived, georeferenced point cloud of a neighborhood in Phoenix. There are about 56 million individual points in this image.