Updates From the Field

Information on the use of UAS at Princeton for fieldwork, research, coursework—and fun.
Student flying drone in field.
Drone Flights For Research, Recreation Move to Forrestal
March 16, 2022

With the beginning of construction on the Lake Campus Development in West Windsor, Princeton University has suspended the use of the recreational area south of Lake Carnegie known as West Windsor Fields. As a result, the Princeton small unmanned aircraft systems (sUAS) program has arranged for flights to move to the James Forrestal Campus in Plainsboro.

New FAA Rules Require Certification For All Drone Pilots
Aug. 27, 2021

Whether you are flying a drone for recreation, education or business purposes, the FAA now requires certification through one of several options. 

New FAA Rules Coming Into Effect
Sept. 30, 2019

New FAA rules for flying drones were instituted in 2018 and are in the process of coming into effect. Most relevant to educational flyers are the updated “special rule” recreational drone standards.

TFRs: What They Are, Why They Matter
Sept. 5, 2018

Temporary Flight Restrictions (TFRs) are issued by the FAA for various hazards (such as wildfires), security reasons and presidential or vice-presidential travel.

The latter type, called VIP TFRs, consist of rings of restricted airspace extending out three nautical miles from the vice president and 30 nautical miles from the president…

Students Explore Ecology Close to Home
March 1, 2018

Since last year, Princeton students have been doing intensive field work to study the impact of land-use change over a diverse and fast-changing landscape of forest, field, stream and lake. 

What might be surprising is that all this work was done right here at Princeton. Undertaken in partnership with Facilities and the Office of…

PEI Research Tracks Vegetation Changes With Drones
Nov. 1, 2017

In an article highlighting research projects by Princeton University undergraduates, the Princeton Environmental Institute (PEI) shines a spotlight on important field data collection techniques utilizing drones. 

Working at the Mpala Research Centre in Kenya, ecology and…

Testing Artificial Intelligence With ‘SnotBot’ Drones
Aug. 7, 2017

Computer scientists at Intel Labs and neuroscientists at Princeton Neuroscience Institute (PNI) are collaborating to explore how insights gained from studies of human behavior and the human brain can be applied to artificial intelligence and the design of more effective autonomous agents.  

Former White House Tech Advisor Outlines Security, Privacy Debates Around UAS
June 6, 2017

The tension between security concerns and the rights of UAS users was at the core of a conversation between guest speaker Terah Lyons and students of Marshini Chetty’s spring 2017 computer science class, “These Aren’t The Drones You Are Looking For: Mitigating the Privacy and Security Implications of Drones.”

Lyons, policy advisor to…

Princeton Students Build Apps Centered on Addressing Privacy Implications of Drone Use
April 21, 2017

As drones become more pervasive on college campuses and other locations for a diverse range of applications, discussions on their impact on the security and privacy within communities are beginning to take place. One potential concern, for example, are that some drones can be used to take video footage of private spaces where it is expected…

Video: Demonstrating Principles of Flight With sUAS
April 12, 2017

A recent morning in Jadwin Gym saw students in Jason Puchalla's Physics 108 class learning to operate remote control birds and mini quadcopters, part of a hands-on lesson in the complexities of animal flight.

The test flights demonstrated the limitations of Bernoulli's Principle in predicting the ways creatures get—and stay—airborne.

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