Learn how to fly a drone confidently in two days

RP lecturers Sasidharan Nair (left), 38, and Decwel Chan, 39, with a drone at the polytechnic grounds.

"DRONES" is the new buzzword among the tech-savvy these days.

Hoping to tap the growing interest and potential of drones is Republic Polytechnic (RP), which has launched a drone training course targeted at professionals and hobbyists.

Slated to begin in mid-April, it is one of RP's Continuing Education and Training courses. It will focus on aerial videography and photography. Members of the public are welcome to sign up.

"At the end of this course, (participants) will learn how to fly (drones) confidently," said instructor Sasidharan Nair.

Drones, which can cost as little as $50, can be used in many ways - from commercial advertising to navigation for military purposes.

Due to the vast potential of drone videography, many corporate businesses have shown interest in the course, Mr Nair said.

The contents of this two-day programme include a theory component, computer simulation and actual drone flying.

While exciting, there are significant safety hazards involved in drone flying. The Civil Aviation Authority of Singapore does not allow drones to fly within 5km of an aerodrome without a permit.

A malfunctioning drone has the ability to severely injure a person, said Mr Nair.

Hence, apart from understanding safety procedures, course participants are required to wear helmets when operating a drone.

Instructors at RP hope that they can develop their course for advanced drone fliers in July, should it prove popular.

Mr Nair added: "There is no age limit to flying a drone. As long as you're in good mind and spirit, you're ready to fly."


This article was first published on Mar 7, 2015.
Get a copy of The Straits Times or go to straitstimes.com for more stories.