Dr. Ken Whitehead is currently the Research Associate with the Centre for Innovation and Research into Unmanned Systems (CIRUS) at SAIT, where he is responsible for coordinating joint UAV research initiatives with industry. He is a UAV mapping and applications specialist, and a former postdoctoral researcher at the University of Calgary, where he studied the potential uses of UAVs for environmental monitoring. While completing his PhD, Ken worked with pioneering UAV survey company, Accuas, where he was responsible for coordinating research into UAV data processing and developing potential UAV applications. He also worked with researchers from a number of universities on a variety of joint industry / academic projects. Ken has lead authored a number of peer-reviewed journal articles on UAV applications, the current state of the UAV industry in Canada, and on the application of accuracy standards for UAV surveys.
Prior to moving to Canada in 1999, Ken worked in both the UK and South Africa, and held a variety of different positions in both the public and private sectors. Over the course of his career he has worked as a land surveyor, photogrammetrist, remote sensing and GIS specialist, remote sensing instructor, and as an independent mapping consultant. During the course of his PhD, he carried out research in the Canadian Arctic, and pioneered the use of UAVs for glaciological surveys. He remains active in the research community, and is especially interested in developing methods for the fusion of ground-based data with UAV imagery.