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  • Utilizing sUAS in Modeling, Measurement, and Blast Design

Utilizing sUAS in Modeling, Measurement, and Blast Design

  • 10 Oct 2018
  • 6:30 PM - 9:00 PM
  • Sheraton Tucson, 5151 E. Grant Road, Conference Center entrance on west side


  • Please make sure you have your dinner sponsorship approved by our Dinner Sponsor Chair prior to making your donation. Thank you!
  • Member of SME Tucson Section that reserves by the deadline.
  • Must be a current UA mining student and member of UA SME.

Program: John Rathbun with Southwest Energy will present “Utilizing sUAS in Modeling, Measurement, and Blast Design.”

Sponsor: AVAILABLE! Please contact Francisco Barrios if interested!


The Federal Aviation Administration’s (FAA) addition of Part 107 to the 14 CFRs in late 2016 allowed for the licensing and operation of small Unmanned Aircraft Systems (sUAS) for commercial use. This added an invaluable tool for the mining industry, specifically to blast design and optimization. Aside from ensuring an optimal perspective for blast filming, utilizing sUAS coupled with various modeling packages brings an entirely new aspect to pattern design and gives the blaster an unparalleled confidence in the outcome.

Before hiring on with Southwest Energy, where he has been employed for 5 years as a Technical Service Engineer based here in Tucson, John Rathbun attended the University of Kentucky where he received a degree in Mining Engineering. After graduation he remained at the university as a post-graduate researcher for the University of Kentucky Explosives Research Team (UKERT) working on projects pertaining to commercial blast optimization, threat mitigation, explosive safety, and testing. He has authored and presented 3 papers at the annual ISEE conference as well as a publication in the Blasting & Fragmentation Journal. He currently sits as the Social Chair for the ISEE Emerging Professionals where they work to retain and recruit students and young blasters in the explosives industry.

Registration Deadline is 12PM on Friday before dinner:

Include for EACH Person (badge will be printed as provided):

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Sheraton Tucson at 5151 E. Grant -- northeast corner of Grant & Rosemont. Use Conference Center Entrance on west side of the hotel.


$31 SME Tucson members who reserve by deadline.

$39 non-members who reserve by deadline.

Add $3 to above ($34/$42) for late RSVPs if space allows.

Free for current UA mining students who are UA SME members.

Payable at the door by cash, credit card, or check payable to SME Tucson.

Cost does not include bar drinks. Cash bar is available.

Cancellations and No Shows:
Please call or email by the registration deadline to cancel.  If you do not cancel your reservation by the deadline, SME is still required to pay for your dinner and you will in turn be billed. Thank you. 

SME Tucson Section
PO Box 65931
Tucson, Arizona 85728
(520) 314-5066
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