19 May 2021 Webinar Programme

Unmanned aerial systems


Date Wednesday 19 May 2021 thales
Time 10:00 - 11:15
Location Virtual 
Social Media #RUKAviation21

Headline Sponsor

For over 40 years, Thales UK has played a major part in the Thales Group's global vision to make people, property and information safer and more secure. We research, develop, manufacture and supply technology and services to the UK's Aerospace, Defence, Security and Transportation sectors, and in doing so, play a critical role in safeguarding people and organisations in the UK and across the globe.



10:00 - 11:15 The future of UAS and the wind industry: Where to next? 

Welcome by Chair

An update on drone policy in the UK from DfT  

How is UAS aiding search and rescue operations offshore? 

Phoenix project – the benefits of collaboration   

What is the next step for UAS in the wind industry? 


Andy Knill
Aviation Technical Consultant, RenewableUK

Andy provides specialist aviation input to RenewableUK. After 20 years in the RAF, he was Head of Surveillance and Spectrum Management at the UK CAA where he additionally held responsibility for Wind Turbine and Aviation issues. In addition to supporting RenewableUK, AIFCL and OWIC, Andy is a member of the Performance Review Body for the Single European Sky.

Andy Knill

Fozie Chughtai
Head of Drones, Department for Transport (DfT)

Leading on drones regulations and policy at Department for Transport. Previously policy roles were in Aviation Security; Local Transport; and High Speed Rail – all at DfT.

Fozia Chughtai

Peter Lowson
Offshore Energy Liaison, Maritime and Coastguard Agency (MCA)

Pete has worked for the Maritime and Coastguard Agency for many years, qualified as a Search and Rescue Mission Coordinator, and has been actively involved in several high-profile major incidents. In his current role, he is responsible for HM Coastguard policy, training, and engagement with the offshore energy industries in the UK. He is highly experienced in maritime operations and is a subject matter expert on offshore energy SAR.

Peter Lowson. Capture

Phil Hanson
Aviation Technical Assurance Manager, Maritime and Coastguard Agency (MCA)

Phil’s career began as an Avionic engineering apprentice at the Royal Naval Aircraft Yard Fleetlands in Gosport Hampshire. Highlights of Phil’s career in aviation to date include: Implementing business change in the Defence Aviation Repair Agency;  Working in MOD airworthiness policy; Management and development of UAV research programmes for the MOD; Project managing the implementation of interim Search and Rescue (SAR) Helicopter contract in introducing new technology; Project engineer for the Joint SAR Helicopter Procurement, holding airworthiness and safety delegations; Managing through life support of 20+ MOD UAV capabilities which provided surveillance and information superiority for the RAF, RN and Army.

Phil’s current role is Maritime and Coastguard Agency’s (MCA) Aviation Technical Assurance Manager. Responsible for the technical aspects of the procurement and acceptance into service of MCA SAR Helicopter service throughout the UK, MCA Aerial Surveillance capability and Maritime drone pathfinder.

Phil Hanson Picture in 189 03

Robert Garbett
Chief Executive, Drone Major

Robert is Founder of Drone Major Group Limited, the world’s first global drone consultancy. He is also Founder of the UK Drone Delivery Group, an industry initiative to provide guidance on the steps required to enable the accelerated commercialization of the UK drone industry. Its members include senior representatives of the aviation industry and various authorities including Boeing, Thales, Microsoft, Department for Transport and the Civil Aviation Authority. Robert is Chairman of the British Standards Institution (BSI) Committee responsible for the development of drone standards in the UK and leads the International Standards Organisation Working Group developing the standards for the operation of unmanned air systems (UAS), both passenger and non-passenger carrying.

 Robert G

Dan Sumner
Regional Partnership Manager, ORE Catapult

Dan is a Regional Partnership Manager at ORE Catapult, working alongside a dedicated team based in all around the UK. He joined ORE Catapult in 2019 after 8 years of offshore inspection, maintenance and repair experience in the oil and gas & renewable energy sectors. He specialises in remote and robotic technologies, working closely with Digital & Data teams as well as hands on O&M specialists to gain an in-depth knowledge of current and future practices.

Dan Sumner

Steve Smith
Senior Programme ManagerThales 

Steve Smith
10:50 - 11:15 Panel discussion with Q&A  
11:15 Event Close