Drone Pilots Needed

Posted August 27, 2013 at 5:45am

Stars and Stripes reports that “although drones have done more shooting and surveillance in recent conflicts than piloted aircraft, the Air Force is having trouble finding pilots to fly them.”

“That’s because professional development opportunities and recognition are lacking in a service branch that still idealizes pilots soaring through the sky in traditional aircraft, according to a recent report from the Brookings Institution.”

In 2012, the Air Force filled only 82 percent of its remotely piloted aircraft, or RPA, training slots, while virtually all manned aircraft slots were filled. And as of early this year, according to the report by Air Force Col. Bradley T. Hoagland, a command pilot, the Air Force Academy had only 12 volunteers for its 40 RPA training slots.