Setting naming conventions early on will save you lots of time once you have logged dozens or hundreds of flights in Skyward. You can establish a professional sUAS operation by using standardized names for aircraft, flight areas, personnel, and custom fields. By standardizing your naming conventions, you will be able to see important information about your operations at a glance. This will help you make the most of your resources to provide exactly what your customers want. This guide assumes that you already have an organization in Skyward and that you know how to add aircraft, flight areas, personnel, batteries and custom fields.
General naming guidelines
- The parts of a name should be ordered by level of detail, from general to specific.
- Use an underscore or colon to separate the sub-elements of a name.
- Capitalize the first word within a sub-element or use a hyphen to separate words within a sub-element.
- Avoid using special characters such as: ! # $ % & ‘ @ ^ ` ~ + , . ; = ) (
Naming Flight Areas
Name the flight area so that you can easily find it at a glance. The name of the flight area should communicate basic information about the location, the owner or controller, and the type of site. Depending on your type of operation, you may use the city name or the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) code for the nearest major airport for the general location. Use an address and site name for the specific location. You may also include the name of the client or site owner so that it is easy to associate the flight area with a specific customer. Skyward recommends naming flight areas like this:
General Location : Specific Location : Type of Location or Site Owner
Examples for naming flight areas:
- FL-Jacksonville:1915 Wigmore St:Storage Yard:Nice Construction Co
- KPDX:Forest Glen Farms:Bluetail Test Area
- BC-Vancouver: Burrard Bridge:West Inspection Area:City of Vancouver
Naming Aircraft (Drones)
The aircraft includes all of the components that make up a complete unmanned aircraft system (UAS). Before naming an aircraft, think about how you want organize your systems.
- Keep it simple. You can change the name later. The highest level is the owner. The next level is usually a kit or system.
- Omit the owner name if you don’t operate aircraft that belong to other organizations.
- Skyward recommends naming aircraft using colon-separated fields. e.g:Owner Name or Kit Number : Manufacturer Name-Model Name : Registration Number or Unique Serial Number
Examples for Aircraft:
- Basic name: senseFly-eBee:N55555
- Assigned to a kit: Kit-03:senseFly-eBee:N55555
- Another organization: Bluetail:senseFly-eBee:N55555
Naming Propulsion Batteries
Before naming a battery, think about how you want organize your systems. Battery names and aircraft names should follow similar patterns.
- Keep it simple.
- You can change the name later.
Because some batteries are only compatible with a specific type of aircraft, it’s useful to include that information in the name. Skyward recommends naming propulsion batteries like this:
- Propulsion batteries used with a specific aircraft type: Owner Name or Kit Number: Compatible Aircraft: Serial Number: Battery Number
- General use propulsion batteries: Owner Name or Kit-Number: Voltage-Capacity(mAh): Connector Type: Battery Number
Examples for batteries compatible with a single aircraft type:
- Basic Name: Aeryon-Skyranger:SN-2411
- Assigned to a specific kit: Kit-01:Aeryon-Skyranger:SN-2411
- Belongs to a different organization: Bluetail:Aeryon-Skyranger:SN-2411
Examples for general use propulsion batteries:
- Basic name: 14.4V-5500mAh:XT60:Battery-01
- Assigned to a specific kit: Kit-01:14.4V-5500mAh:XT60:Batt-01
- Belongs to a different organization: Bluetail:14.4V-5500mAh:T-plug:Batt-01
Skyward is your system of record for professional sUAS operations. Use the first and last name as shown on a government-issued ID for each person. Don’t use nicknames or initials, but do use a professional looking photograph.
Use the first and last name as shown on a government issued ID for each person. Upload a professional looking photograph.
Using Custom Fields
Using custom fields allows you to add important information to aircraft, batteries, and flights. Group your custom fields by choosing standardized names. Follow the pattern of going from general to specific when creating labels for your custom fields.
You can create, delete, or update custom fields for Aircraft, Personnel, Batteries, Operations, and Flight records. Start by clicking the Edit button on the record to enter the Edit mode and then adding a custom field label and value in the custom field section. Be sure to add the custom field value, even it is only a placeholder suggestion, in order to save your new custom field.
You can also add custom fields to then information panel on the dashboard. Start by clicking the pencil “edit” icon under your avatar icon on the left.
- Keep it simple. Only add custom fields to manage information that carries across all of your flight ops.
- You can delete or change the name of a custom field later!
Skyward recommends the following custom fields for aircraft, batteries, and personnel.
Aircraft Custom Fields
You should carefully consider what information that you need to track for each aircraft. Common fields are found in the information side panel, but Skyward provides the flexibility to allow you to track additional information that is specific to your workflow and operations. You can add any label and value you like. However, there are several fields that Skyward users have found useful.
Here are some suggested custom fields.
|Label Example||Value Example|
|Controller Serial Number||PZ32442|
|Controller Firmware Version||2.1|
|Cables||3 USB Micro|
|Spare Propellers||12 Black: 6 CW; 6 CCW|
|Case||1 GPC Case|
|Spec: Max Flight Time||23 minutes|
|GCS Computer||Macbook Air C1MPW3NAG442|
Battery custom fields
Use these custom fields to manage the inventory and configuration of each propulsion battery.
|Label Example||Value Example|
|Storage Location||Kit 01 Container|
Personnel Custom Fields
Your flight crews and support staff are critical to the operations. Skyward custom fields can be used to track information such as upcoming currency requirements, safety training, certifications, or qualifications, that are important to your operations. Below are some examples of common custom field types for pilots.
|Label Example||Value Example|
|Pilot certificate number||82406|
|Pilot Certificate Type||Commercial|
|Pilot Certificate Status||Current|
|Medical Certificate Type||US: Class 3|