Barcy vi­sion from on high

Warwick Daily News - South West Queensland Rural Weekly - - Rural Weekly -

CEN­TRAL Western Queens­land is poised for take off as a mecca for in­ter­na­tional drone test­ing.

The Cen­tral Western Queens­land Re­mote Area Plan­ning and De­vel­op­ment Board (RAPAD) will kick off its plan to make the re­gion a cen­tre for drone test­ing as it hosts re­gional Aus­tralia’s first ever drones sym­po­sium in Bar­cal­dine from Au­gust 11 – 12, 2018.

The Out­back Aero­drone Sym­po­sium will at­tract the lat­est in drones and data tech­nol­ogy, with a pro­gram in­clud­ing in­dus­try ex­perts, hands-on demon­stra­tions, and a trade show.

RAPAD CEO David Arnold said the event would also launch RAPAD’s vi­sion for an out­back aero­drone pro­gram, to po­si­tion the re­gion to be the choice lo­ca­tion to host na­tional and global play­ers in Be­yond Visual Line of Sight (BVLOS) drone test­ing.

“Out­back Aero­drone 2018 pro­vides a fan­tas­tic op­por­tu­nity to meet and lis­ten to some of Aus­tralia’s lead­ing drone and data ex­perts right here in our re­gion,” Mr Arnold said.

“From agri­cul­ture, to emer­gency ser­vices, to in­fra­struc­ture, drone tech­nolo­gies pro­vide op­por­tu­ni­ties to sup­port our com­mu­ni­ties and pro­vide ser­vices like never be­fore.

“We’ve had great suc­cess in de­liv­er­ing start up week­ends and dig­i­tal train­ing across the re­gion, and our tech­nol­ogy precinct at Westech was buzzing last year, fur­ther demon­strat­ing that peo­ple are al­ready do­ing amaz­ing things and there’s a strong ap­petite for more,” he said.

“The clear, open skies and light hours of Out­back Queens­land are all part of what makes our re­gion a great draw-card for the world’s drone busi­nesses and en­thu­si­asts.

RAPAD Chair, Cr Rob Chan­dler said lead­ing the way with these tech­nolo­gies meant that re­gion could be on the front foot to de­liver many ben­e­fits to the lo­cal econ­omy, skills ca­pac­ity and jobs.

“The Cen­tral West is a place where ev­ery­one is ready to give it a go and tech­nol­ogy is break­ing down bar­ri­ers in many ar­eas - it’s an ex­cit­ing time as we re­alise the sig­nif­i­cant amount of un­tapped po­ten­tial we have here,” Cr Chan­dler said.

“Tech­nol­ogy and the Dig­i­tal Econ­omy is one of RAPAD’s pri­or­ity ar­eas, and this event is de­liv­er­ing on our com­mit­ment to en­sure in­di­vid­u­als, busi­nesses and com­mu­ni­ties are ready to take ad­van­tage of what’s avail­able.

“Tech­nol­ogy so­lu­tions such as drones are al­ready on the radar or in use for many peo­ple in our re­gion – gen­er­at­ing lo­cal ex­per­tise, new busi­nesses and jobs.

“By bring­ing to­gether in­dus­try lead­ers and pro­fes­sion­als from across the sec­tor, the sky re­ally is the limit for what at­ten­dees can get out of this.”

The Out­back Aero­drone Sym­po­sium will be held at Gre­gory Park, just out of Bar­cal­dine, with bus trans­fers avail­able. Reg­is­tra­tions are now open. Find out more at out­back­aero­drone.com.au.

PHO­TOS: CON­TRIB­UTED

HIGH EYE: Bar­cal­dine will host an Aero­drone Sym­po­sium in Au­gust, part of a push to de­velop Queens­land's cen­tral west as a drone test­ing hub.

The Cen­tral Western Queens­land Re­mote Area Plan­ning and De­vel­op­ment Board (RAPAD) drone and tech­nol­ogy sec­tor net­works are help­ing de­liver a strong line-up of speak­ers for the Sym­po­sium. Pic­tured at the World of Drones Congress, from left, Mor­gan Gronold, RAPAD Se­nior Re­gional De­vel­op­ment Man­ager; con­firmed Sym­po­sium speaker Pi­eter Van Jaarsveld, CEO at IDS Aus­trala­sia; David Arnold, RAPAD CEO; and Kris­tine Arnold, RAPAD.

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