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Ohio’s UAS Experts Take “Fly Ohio” Message to AUVSI

DENVER— A team of Ohio’s Unmanned Aerial Systems experts arrived at XPONENTIAL 2018 Tuesday, ready to share why the Buckeye State’s UAS industry continues to grow and thrive.

The global conference by the Association for Unmanned Vehicle Systems International (AUVSI) marks one of the industry’s leading gatherings, featuring more than 600 companies in 20 UAS-related industries. An expected 8,000 industry professionals from 55 countries will attend the three-day event.

“UAS has taken off in Ohio,” said Maurice McDonald, Dayton Development Coalition’s Executive Vice President for Aerospace and Defense. “Out of sight is on the horizon, and now is the perfect time to learn more about what Ohio can offer. Ohio has the infrastructure and workforce to support the UAS industry. A strong culture of innovation and a thriving manufacturing industry provide an unmatched environment for UAS research, development and production.”

In October, the State of Ohio and the U.S. Air Force Research Laboratory (AFRL) announced plans to invest $5 million in a Ground Based Sense and Avoid system at Springfield-Beckley Airport for BLOS research. Once the system is up and running, it will allow AFRL to use more than 200 nm2 for UAS BLOS flight in unrestricted airspace.

“Just like the Wright Brothers chose one square mile of farmland northeast of Dayton to perfect the airplane, Ohio will be on the leading edge of BLOS flight,” McDonald said. “It’s an exciting time to fly in Ohio!”

Each year, the Dayton Development Coalition leads a delegation of Ohio UAS industry experts to showcase the State’s UAS strengths and highlight the work of Ohio-based UAS businesses, educational programs, and operational ranges.

The Air Force Research Laboratory and the NASA Glenn Research Center bolster the state’s robust reputation for aerospace research and development, with more than $9 Billion invested in R&D each year. Ohio is the number one supplier to Boeing and Airbus, and both companies spend more money in Ohio on their supply chain than any other state.

Ohio’s XPONENTIAL delegation will include the DDC’s aerospace and aviation team, JobsOhio, the Ohio/Indiana UAS Center, SelectTech Services Corp., Sinclair Community College, Clark State Community College, the U.S. Air Force Research Laboratory, Springfield-Beckley Airport, Cornerstone Research Group, Defense Research Associates, Event 38, the Great Lakes Assessment and Research Enterprise, Skyward, Theiss UAV Solutions, Woolpert and Workhorse Custom Chassis. These experts will be on hand for the duration of the conference, and will staff a custom-designed state pavilion, #2239, that showcases the State’s strengths and leadership in UAS research and development, materials and manufacturing, training and education, and applied capabilities.

Though still primarily a military market, UAS have practical commercial applications such as border patrol, search and rescue, parks and recreation, fire and police assistance, and more. According to an economic study by AUVSI, the UAS industry will see considerable growth over the next several years, and by 2025, it’s projected that UAS integration will create more than 100,000 jobs, and have an economic impact upwards of $82 billion dollars.

Leaders from the state, and at the DDC, have focused economic development and infrastructure efforts on supporting UAS industry growth and development in order to capture a significant share of this market.


The State of Ohio has unmatched resources, capabilities and opportunities for the UAS community, including UAS training, manufacturing, world-class R&D, systems integration, data analytics, and operational ranges. We offer an exceptional environment for government, industry and academic collaboration. Come see why you should “Fly Ohio.”

The Dayton Development Coalition (DDC) is the leading economic development organization for the 14-county Dayton region. Working closely with public and private regional partners, its mission is to retain, expand and recruit jobs. The DDC and the Dayton region ranked as the nation’s top metro for economic development in 2008, 2009 and 2012 and runner-up in 2010, 2011, 2014 and 2015. With the State’s largest single-site employer in its backyard, the DDC also focuses on advocating for the critical missions at Wright-Patterson Air Force Base and supporting the work of the United States Air Force. The DDC was ranked as America’s top military community, being honored with the 2015 Community Excellence Award from the Association of Defense Communities and was designated an ADC Great American Defense Community in 2016 – a testament to the collaborative efforts in support of Wright-Patt, America’s #1 Air Force Base as ranked by the Air Force Times (2014).

For additional information, contact Shannon Joyce Neal at (937) 231-5436, at, or visit the Ohio Booth, #2239.

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