Education Sessions

NAAA Ag Aviation Expo
December 4–7, 2017 ♦ Savannah, Ga.
Several educational sessions will be available throughout the Ag Aviation Expo. Educational Sessions are organized by NAAA with assistance from its Allied Industry Committee to provide information of general interest to the aerial application industry. Sessions are also organized by individual companies to showcase their particular products and services. Watch the schedule as it develops and plan to attend as many Educational Sessions as possible (CEUs may be available for some states).

2017 Ag Aviation Expo Educational Sessions are available on a first come, first serve basis. Contact Lindsay for availability. Company must be an Allied Industry member of NAAA and an exhibitor to host a company sponsored session. 

All sessions will take place at the Savannah International Trade & Convention Center, unless otherwise noted. Additional session details will be listed below as they become available. 

Sunday, Dec. 3
4:45 - 6:15 p.m.

Compaass Rose
Attend this session if you’re new to the industry or interested in becoming an ag pilot. Compaass Rose provides professional support and direction for newbies and those who want to learn more. Additional details on Compaass RosePlease note: This session is for attendees with five years or less of experience. 

AG-NAV Session: Improving Obstacle Awareness and Alert for Pilot Safety
Speaker: Lai Nguyen, P.Eng. with the help of AG-NAV Staff
Each year there are many sad stories about fatal and near fatal ag plane accidents caused by hitting obstacles. Unfortunately, not all obstacles are clearly visible to pilots. Accidents normally happen because of poor awareness. Pilot safety will be improved by improving obstacle awareness and alerting the pilot when he/she is approaching a dangerous zone. Even though an obstacle alert feature is available in a guidance system, pilots may not know how to use it and so they do not take advantage of it. Attend this session to learn more.

Monday, Dec. 4
1 - 2:30 p.m. 

FAA/Security Session
Approved CEUs: ID

Take advantage of this unique opportunity to ask questions and speak directly with NAAA’s Washington, D.C. points-of-contact with federal agencies that have oversight over ag aviation operations in the U.S.
  • Jennifer Rodi, NTSB
  • Jody Hemler, FAA
  • Jude Sellers, FAA
Radial Engines Session
Discussion of Pratt & Whitney R-985 and R-1340 series of radial engines. Best operating experience/guidance and Q & A for attendees. Please come prepared to ask questions and learn all you can.
Moderator: Rob Seeman, Covington Aircraft Engines
  • Ron Hollis, Covington Aircraft Engines
  • Rex Vaughn: Tulsa Aircraft Engines
SATLOC Session
IntelliFlow Advancements and Support
Speakers: Zach Jenkins, Ian McVay and Mike Thurman

Monday, Dec. 4
2:45 - 4:15 p.m. 

Low-Level Obstacles Session
Approved CEUs: ID

This session will discuss the efforts underway to integrate unmanned aerial vehicles into the national airspace. It will also provide an update on the latest technologies being developed for UAS traffic management (UTM). This session will also include an update on federal tower marking requirements for towers under 200 feet.
Panelists and Moderator:
  • Andrew Moore, NAAA Executive Director
  • Danielle Corbett, FAA
  • Jody Hemler, FAA
  • Madison Dixon, Mississippi State University 
  • Steve Willer, AirMap
TPE331 Update & Discussion
Bruce Hubler
Presenter: Griff Kinsinger, Honeywell 
  • Robert Baker, Ag-Air Turbines
  • Danny Moore,  CD Aviation Services  
  • Terry Cooley,   Copper State Turbine Engine Co.
  • Mark Richardson, Turbine Standard  
  • Bob Hancock, Hancock Enterprises 
AgSync & VeriFly GPS? Session
Speaker: Ryan Eby
AgSync: Come review recent updates and improvements in the AgSync system. If you’ve never seen AgSync before, see how this complete system can streamline ordering thru completion and invoicing. Highlights will include safety and compliance updates such as, real-time worker in field alerts, Driftwatch layer viewable on screen and printed maps, and ability to identify fields with crop trait annotations. 

FliteTek/VeriFly: Experience the new way of spraying. We will review and demonstrate how the VeriFly system offers one step, apply now guidance in a seamless system. See how the VeriFly system will give you instant aircraft tracking as the work is being done, including syncing as-applied data back into the AgSync system, or exportable for other systems.  

Monday, Dec. 4
4:30 - 6 p.m.

PT6 Session
An industry panel comprised of representatives from P&WC, P&WC designated overhaul facilities and FAA approved PT6 overhaul facilities. New technical data will be provided, along with a Service Bulletin update and Best Operating Practices, as well as Q&A for attendees.  Please come prepared to ask questions and learn all you can.

Chemical Session
Approved CEUs: MA, ME, OH

The Chemical Industry panel will provide company product innovations and updates. 
Moderator: Brian Anniss, Arysta LifeScience
  • Shawn "Tater" Erickson, DowDupont, DowDupont Update
  • Steffan Bush, EGE Products, New Adjuvant Technology
  • Nick Fassler, BASF, Plant Health Fungicides and New Product Update
  • Mike Harper, FMC, New Lucento Fungicide label expected sometime in 2018 for Corn, Soy, and Wheat from FMC
  • Tom Hogan, Precision Laboratories, Total Spray Droplet Management
AG-NAV Session: Applying New Technologies to Improve Aerial Application.   
Speaker: Lai Nguyen, P.Eng. with the help of AG-NAV Staff
With continuous improvements in internet, computer and data communication technologies, besides accurate guidance for spraying, a navigation system developed for aerial agricultural application can do a lot more from auto spray and variable flow control to wireless data transfer and real time application tracking on internet. Attend this session to see what your AgNav navigation system can do for you.

Tuesday, Dec. 5
7 - 8:30 a.m.

Transland Breakfast & Seminar - Westin Savannah
Approved CEUs: ME

Damon Reabe, Reabe Spraying Service and Dairyland Aviation in Waupun, Wis. will speak about Cover Crops and some new concepts and techniques in application technology. 

Wednesday, Dec. 6
8 - 9:30 a.m.

Helicopter Session 
Presenter: Jeff Reabe, Reabe Aircraft Improvement
The subjects for the helicopter session roundtable will be brought up by attendees! The person with the answer to your question may be sitting two chairs away from you!

GE Aviation Session
Chem-Man Premier Billing and Mapping Software
Speakers: John Farris and Regina Farmer
Chem-Man Online presentation of how our software will save you time and money with it's unique synchronization of scheduling, mapping and billing. We will show you the latest updates and talk about future goals. 
USDA Aerial Image Processing Workshop  (runs until 10 a.m.)
Approved CEUs: MA

During the last few NAAA Convention & Expositions, USDA has presented both single-camera and dual-camera imaging systems for use on agricultural aircraft and in 2016, we also offered an aerial image processing workshop. In the 2017 workshop, we will demonstrate some of the image systems we have assembled and provide up-to-date information on these systems. We will also demonstrate how to use the commercial image processing software Pix4DMapper to process a set of geotagged red-green-blue (RGB) and near-infrared (NIR) images acquired with a two-camera imaging system. The images will be converted into georeferenced image mosaics, surface elevation models, normalized difference vegetation index (NDVI) maps and prescription maps for precision aerial application. Any NAAA Ag Aviation Expo attendees are welcome to attend the workshop to see the camera systems and/or the process to convert images into useful maps. For those who are interested in gaining some hands-on experience on image processing, please contact Chenghai Yang at to receive the download instructions for the software and sample images for the workshop. 

Wednesday, Dec.6
9:45 - 10:15 a.m.

Simplex Aerospace Session
Current and future Simplex systems in Agricultural and Firefighting.
Speaker: Casey Zimmerman 
DowDuPont Unlocking the Value 
Presenter: Shawn "Tater" Erickson 
Dow/DuPont Crop Protection is an exciting merger of two of Americas great corporations. Join us as we showcase many of the aerial application friendly products that can return value to our farmer customers.
Air Repair RX Gate System and Dry Flow Control Discussion
Presenters: Pete Jones, Dallas Bright, Ryan Cannon, Kelly Peeler 
Discussion will include common misconceptions in dry flow control, prescription application, current state of the art.

Wednesday, Dec. 6
4 - 5:30 p.m.

Compaass Rose
Attend this session if you’re new to the industry or interested in becoming an ag pilot. Compaass Rose provides professional support and direction for newbies and those who want to learn more. Additional details on Compaass RosePlease note: This session is for attendees with five years or less of experience.
APS Brakes Session – How to Get the Best Performance
Speaker: Ben McNamara, APS, Inc.

This Session covers the design and performance of the APS ‘BlackSteel’ brakes and includes details on the PMA process with the FAA.  Basic maintenance awareness is discussed along with the importance of the conditioning of new linings and discs upon their change.  Ben is the domestic and international sales manager for APS, Inc. which manufactures the APS ‘BlackSteel’ PMA aircraft brakes along with other PMA approved aircraft parts.  He holds a BS in Aviation Maintenance Management from Southern Illinois University Carbondale and also holds a FAA A&P license.  Ben currently resides in St. Louis, MO.  

Insero: GPS for Ag Pilots Session
Pratt & Whitney Canada Session
Your Engines are Talking, You Could be Listening
PT6A Engine Trend Monitoring
Speaker: Robert Winchcomb

Thursday, Dec. 7

8:45 - 10:15 a.m.
Thrush Aircraft Session: Being the Best

Speakers: Payne Hughes and Eric Rojek

10:15 - 11:45 a.m.
Advancements at Air Tractor

Speakers: Jim Hirsch and Bob Salyers
This session will include an OEM update from Air Tractor President Jim Hirsch. The second half of the presentation will be an update on Air Tractors recent service letters.

1:15 - 2:30 p.m.
NAAREF Safety Session
Approved CEUs: CO, OH

No matter your skill level, every operator, pilot and operation employee should attend the NAAREF Safety Session. Brought to you by the people who present the PAASS Program. Listen to the presentation and bring your questions to this discussion on safety issues affecting ag pilots. An FAA expert representative will lead a discussion on managing safety at an ag operation by dissecting all areas in an operation to ensure pilot, employee and environmental protection. 

2:45 - 4:15 p.m.
"Ask the Expert" Speed Mentoring Session

If you’ve been in the industry less than five years, grab a seat at the table for the “Ask theExpert” Speed Mentoring Session, a fast-paced orientation session that provides new and prospective ag pilots with a quick 360-degree overview of what’s required and what it takes to work as a pilot in the agricultural aviation industry. A series of quick-hitting speed mentoring rounds will be led by experienced operators and pilots, insurance representatives and ag school representatives. This is your chance to pose questions to industry experts in a smaller group setting than Compaass Rose.
Aviation Specialties Unlimited Session: Expanded Capabilities and ROI of Night Vision Q & A
Please join ASU for a Q & A session from the ag operators flying night vision goggles on the expanded capabilities and return on investment of Night Vision. We’ll bring the beer—you bring the questions. Hear the first-hand experience from the pioneers of night vision for agricultural applications. Bruce Hubler of Valley Air Service, Jim Perrin from Agricair, LLC, Bob Klein of Klein Flying Service, and Justin Watlington, director of operations for ASU will address your questions and concerns regarding NVG safety, applications, how you can expand your operations with your current assets, and, of course, return on investment.
  • Bruce Hubler, Valley Air Service
  • Jim Perrin, Agricair, LLC
  • Bob Klein, Klein Flying Service
  • Justin Watlington ASU
Aviation Safety Equipment, Myths and Reality
Presented by Michael Rutledge, current Ag pilot, Navy SEAL, Army Special Operations Aviator, former aviation safety officer and accident investigator.
An in depth discussion of helmets and flight clothing. The session will point out the differences of various products and manufacturers, dispel myths on what safety equipment can and can't do to protect you and conclude with a brief highlight of scenarios in which safety equipment enhanced survival.