Firetail Vanuatu and Volcanoes

Firetail chose Vanuatu as one of its pilot sites and visited Port Vila from 17 – 23 Sep 2016 to familiarise the team with Vanuatu and meet key stakeholders, in particular the Vanuatu Government’s National Disaster Management Office (NDMO), DFAT in Port Vila and World Vision Vanuatu (WVV).  


This involved flying the drone in Vanuatu airspace and the necessary approvals required. Firetail presented to World Vision Vanuatu staff on Wed 21 September in Port Vila and to Vanuatu Humanitarian Team on Thu 22 September, also in Port Vila.

At these presentations the Firetail team answered a range of questions which provided insights to ensure the design accommodates cultural considerations and local conditions. 


This is some of the most unique footage ever captured from a UAV (Drone) inside a volcano. Firetail Australia would like to thank World Vision Australia and Vanuatu as well as NDMO Vanuatu, DFAT Australia, Innovation Exchange Australia and CAA Vanuatu for this unique opportunity.

And the winners are....


Well we did it...  We’re excited that Australia’s Minister for Foreign Affairs, the Hon Julie Bishop MP and Minister for International Development and the Pacific, Senator the Hon. Concetta Fierravanti-Wells have announced the winners of the Pacific Humanitarian Challenge.  Here they are:

  • Mobile SME Insurance in the Pacific Islands – BIMA Leapfrog
  • The Firetail: An Easily-Deployed Low-Cost Unmanned Aerial System – Firetail
  • Pacific Local Supplier Engagement Project – Australian Red Cross
  • Infrastructure-Independent Mobile Communications – Flinders University & New Zealand Red Cross
  • Pacific Drone Imagery Dashboard (PacDID) – Humanitarian OpenStreetMap Team

They started with 129 top class ideas which were selected down to 10, among these were 30 drone related projects! well done us :)

Announcing the Top Ten Finalists of the Pacific Humanitarian Challenge


The Pacific Humanitarian Challenge asked the world to find innovative solutions to problems that the Pacific Islands face every time they respond to an emergency. We are pleased to be announced as a top ten finalist!

Firetail: Easily Deployed Low Cost UAS
The Firetail is an unmanned aerial system consisting of a low cost foam wing, Australian made and designed Firetail autopilot and software to enable both the collection and presentation of real time georeferenced images and maps for damage assessment. This project was developed by Australian technology and UAV specialists.