Cooperative Research Units
Education, Research And Technical Assistance For Managing Our Natural Resources
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Integration, Validation and fusion of Small Unmanned Aircraft systems


August 2016 - August 2019


This project addresses the design and development of unmanned aerial platforms and their control and support systems, integration of sensors, and post-processing of data outputs in support of natural resource-related investigations.

Research Products and Activities

Technical Publications

  • Rees, A. F. and R. R. Carthy. 2018. The Second Annual Workshop on the Use of UAVs in Sea Turtle Research and Conservation at the 38th International Sea Turtle Symposium: 19 Feb 2018. Marine Turtle Newsletter.Abstract |


  • Burgess, Matthew A. 2017. Small unmanned aircraft systems and their payloads as aerial data collection platforms for natural resource-based applications. PhD Dissertation. May 2017. University of Florida.
    Department of Wildlife Ecology and Conservation.

    Download  | 


  • Carthy, R.R., M.A. Burgess, P.G. Ifju, B.E. Wilkinson, and H.F. Percival. 2014. Development and application of small unmanned aircraft systems (sUAS) for natural resources: logistics, legalities, and lessons learned. 68th Annual Conference of the Southeastern Association of Fish and Wildlife Agencies. Destin, Florida.
  • Burgess, M. A., Zweig, C. L., Newman, S., Cook, M. I., Rodgers, H. L., Carthy, R. R., Wilkinson, B. E., Whitley, T. J., Ward, T. S., DiRodio, J. G., Frederick, P. C., Ifju, P. G., Smith, S. E., Percival, H. F. (2015, April). Applications of high-resolution aerial imagery and a small unmanned aircraft system in everglades science. Presented at the 2015 Greater Everglades Ecosystem Restoration (GEER) conference, Coral Springs, Fl.
  • Carthy, R.R., M. Burgess, P. Ifju, B. Wilkinson, S. Smith, and T. Whitley. 2016. UAs Technology for Sea Turtle Research and Conservation.Workshop Presentation at the South East Regional Sea Turtle Network Meeting. Mobile, AL, February 10-12,2016.

Current Staff

Federal Staff: 95

Masters Students: 240

Phd Students: 142

Post Docs: 52

University Staff: 242

5 Year Summary

Students graduated: 702

Scientific Publications: 1951

Presentations: 4266



Funding Agencies

  • USGS-Land Remote Sensing Program


Cooperative Research Units Program Headquarters Cooperators

  1. U.S. Geological Survey