Job Family: Engineering and Scientific Research Unmanned Vehicle (UV) Operations Specialists
Services Offering this Occupation
Army  | Navy  | Air Force  | Marine Corps  | National Guard

Photo 1: Specialists launch unmanned aerial vehicle. 2:
Marine stands with his unmanned ground vehicle.

Short Description
The military uses remotely piloted unmanned vehicles for a variety of purposes, such as deep sea exploration, intelligence gathering, remote surveillance, and target applications. These vehicles are used in the air, on land, and at sea in operations or missions that could be dangerous for human operators onboard the vehicle. The military requires skilled operators and technicians to maintain and control these vehicles. Personnel normally specialize by the type of vehicle they operate, such as unmanned aerial vehicles, ground vehicles, surface vehicles, and undersea vehicles.


What They Do
Unmanned vehicle operations specialists in the military perform some or all of the following duties:
  • Prepare and install equipment on or within the unmanned vehicle
  • Operate, navigate, launch, track, and recover unmanned vehicles
  • Operate equipment in remote receiving stations and ground control stations
  • Coordinate with other personnel to complete the designated mission
  • Perform pre-flight, in-flight, and post-flight checks and procedures
  • Operate and perform operator level maintenance on communications equipment, power sources, light and heavy wheel vehicle and some crane operations

Helpful Attributes
Helpful attributes include:
  • Enjoy working with tools
  • Knowledge of electronic theory and schematic drawing
  • Superior adaptability to three dimensional spatial relationships

Training Provided
Job training varies depending on the position. Course content typically includes:
  • Unmanned vehicle concepts and capabilities
  • Operation of unmanned vehicles
  • Basic preventative maintenance

Work Environment
Unmanned vehicle operations specialists work under a variety of conditions depending upon the type of vehicle and mission. Some specialists work in control stations or receiving stations on land, while others work aboard ships.


Civilian Counterparts
Unmanned vehicles are used in several civilian areas, such as mining, petroleum exploration, environmental research, and manufacturing. Civilian unmanned vehicle operations specialists perform duties similar to those of their military counterparts.

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