SEAR (Science Experiential Aerial Research) Program

This was the culminating activity after successfully completing 4 half-day training sessions as part of the SEAR Crop Disease Project, facilitated by Matthew Johnson from Volatus Aerospace. The Science Experiential Aerial Research (SEAR) program immersed students in a sustainable community project that introduced them to novel technologies and data collection and analysis methods involving both drones and machine learning while engaging them in the scientific discovery process.

 Throughout the full day in Portage, students rotated between the following stations: Soil Analysis Station, Root Analysis Station, Leaf Chlorophyll Analysis Station, Flight Training Station, Data Collection Station and Ag Careers Station. These activities engaged students in the data collection, processing and analysis of crop research data utilizing aerial remote detection technologies. Students learned how to make ground-based measurements, such as collecting soil samples, in addition to aerial data collection techniques.

 This was Year 1 of a possible 3 year project and Sunrise SD is seeking interested project partners that may assist by providing additional research support, or funding to help cover project expenses.