Customer Showcase: Aeryon Labs / Aeryon Defense USA
Drone pilot training and certification program for military, law enforcement, public safety, and energy sectors.
Aeryon Labs Inc. is a leading manufacturer of high-performance Unmanned Aircraft Systems (UAS) for military, public safety, and commercial customers and is recognized as one of the 500 fastest growing technology, media, telecommunications, life sciences and energy tech companies in North America.
Aeryon Defense USA is a U.S. defense contractor delivering the next generation of high-performance, small Unmanned Aircraft Systems (sUAS) and software to U.S. military forces and government agencies.
When Aeryon Labs first engaged with Education Services LLC, all pilot training was delivered face-to-face, through instructor led classroom training followed by live hands-on flight activities in the field. Aeryon hired Education Services to help them modernize the training program, to make effective use of learning science, modern pedagogy, and online technology. Goals included ensuring that all trainees received the same high quality training whether trained by Aeryon instructors, authorized partners, or military trainers, and to reduce the time require for the in-person training while increasing time spent in the field, flying the aircraft under the trainers supervision.
Education Services began by performing instructional design and learning engineering services, defining instructor evaluation rubrics for pilot certification, identifying content appropriate for online independent learning and practice vs. activities that are best facilitated in-person by qualified instructors, and evaluating online technology to enable it all.
Today these training programs have matured through multiple iterations, each more sophisticated than the one before. The program has been well received by customers due to extensive use of multimedia, interactive activities, independent exploration, guided practice 'pseudo simulators', and integration of the fully functional mission control software flight simulator.
Trainees can also revisit the online platform at any time to review training materials and practice in the simulators.
Education Services built and supports custom learning platforms used by both divisions. Aeryon is hosted in the AWS public cloud and Aeryon Defense USA is hosted in the secure AWS GovCloud.
Watch this video to hear from Peter Blake, one of Aeryon's thought-leaders who championed this training effort.
Online and face-to-face training includes simulations, pseudo-simulations, and formal and informal assessment of skills and knowledge. Online portions are deployed both online and locally on laptops.
In this format, the full training is delivered by an Aeryon-certified instructor in a face-to-face experience. This is typically used when learners don't have consistent access to a computer or internet connection prior to their training sessions. Learners are taught the same material and evaluated by the same standards as learners taught in a blended training format.
In this format, students can self-study the first half of the training modules online, and the remaining modules are taught face-to-face by an Aeryon-certified instructor. This approach allocates more in-person training time for advanced topics, practice flights, and passing off certification flights while being evaluated by the instructor.
For experienced pilots, online-only training is provided to explain product updates and provide opportunities for practice in the software simulator. This allows these pilots to get up-to-speed quickly, at a time that is most convenient for them, without losing precious flight time for scheduled training sessions.
The development methodology for this project was based on the SAM model and Rapid Prototyping. The process has been highly collaborative and iterative, allowing the training to increase in complexity and interactivity as opportunities for growth have been identified and new products have been released.
Watch the video to learn more about how our methodology guided this project.
Examples From The Training
Several examples from the actual training course are included below. Contact us for a guided demonstration.
Mission Control Station
This module introduces the Aeryon Mission Control Station (MCS) software. The module consists of 3 interactive activities:
Watch - A video style multi-media presentation that introduces the MCS and prepares the student for the next activity.
Explore - An interactive exercise where the student learns the name and purpose of each control in the MCS user interface.
Knowledge Check - An end of module quiz to confirm and validate learning.
Basic Flight Controls
This module teaches the basic flight controls using a "see one, do one" approach. Using this approach, the student first watches the operation as it is explained and performed correctly, then they perform the same operation in a guided practice activity in preparation for free-flight practice using the fully functional Aeryon MCS Simulator. This allows the student to get comfortable using the flight software prior to the in-person field activity where they will fly the actual aircraft while being evaluated by an Aeryon-trained instructor.
The Level 1 course includes training on how to plan and execute all three types of semi-autonomous flight plans using the same "see one, do one" approach that students became familiar with while learning and practicing Basic Flight Controls.