It was not too long ago that unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs), otherwise known as drones, were seen by industry insiders as gimmicks at best – toys at worst.
Now, however, forward-thinking businesses across many industries are realising drones are a great tool to quickly gather data to help increase efficiency, reduce risk and offer a way to reduce overall cost.
With many applications from media through to construction and much more, there are still a lot of business owners who have not yet realised the potential of commercial drones.
Here's an overview of a few applications:
As you can see, drone technology can be of benefit in many ways, often bringing a reduction in time, cost and safety.
It is expected that drones will become a great tool for businesses to increase efficiency and perhaps more importantly, offer a way to reduce overall cost.
Media / Marketing
Drones can capture stunning high resolution images and video from totally different perspective, capturing a viewpoint that is difficult from the ground.
A camera in the sky can showcase your project, wether it is a property, a whole site or an event.
Simple inspection jobs of an asset, buildings or structure is now easily done by flying a Drone, identifying areas in need of repair.
Particular areas where it is hard to get to by foot, such as roofs, bridges, wind farms etc. are now far easier to reach using Drones and much safer.
Drones used in this manner are an invaluable time saving tool, providing high quality images, without the need for scaffolding or cherry pickers.
Images can be collated into a detailed report for further analysis / distribution.
Solar Panel Inspections
Drones are capable of carrying thermal imaging / infra red cameras. This enabled fast, effective inspection of solar panels.
Thermal images can determine if your panels are functioning correctly. Useful to do on a regular maintenance basis, or to assist with warranty claims.
Wether it is a few panels on a domestic roof, or a large solar farm, drones can save a lot of time in this scenario and accurately identify a faulty panel.
Surveying / Planning
Aerial survey technology is constantly improving with drones now being able to collect images which can produce masps and models to millimeter accuracy.
Distance, area, volume and relief can all be accurately calculated using the correct drone, camera and software.
Accessibility and accuracy are helping drones to establish their role in surveying and the reproduction of accurate measuring.
This has particular applications for initial surveys, when access to all parts of the site may not be possible.
Footage from initial surveys also helps to inform impact assessments and provide historical records.
...DRONE TECHNOLOGY CAN BE OF BENEFIT IN MANY WAYS, OFTEN BRINGING A REDUCTION IN TIME, COST AND SAFETY.
There are many site tasks which a drone can facilitate with greater speed and accuracy yet much less expense than traditional methods, giving a significant impact on the way construction projects are managed, reducing project timelines, improving communications, making site assessment and inventories more accurate and improving safety.
Using the new software, project managers will be able to visualise their sites via panoramic imagery and videos, as well as overlaying plan drawings on drone imagery, highlighting grading inaccuracies, health and safety issues etc
Outputs generated can be integrated with CAD, BIM and other aerial or GIS (ground information system) software.
Site security and maintenance
Risk and safety management
Reduction in re work due to timely updates
Drones can facilitate the management of Protected Areas.
For example, drones can be used to monitor alien plant invasions, check fence lines and infrastructure, and map water sources etc.
One successful application has been the monitoring of active erosion along rive courses and the assessment of erosion control features put in place to prevent further erosion.
Drones therefore provide an indication of the areas that may require intervention and the success of those interventions.
We are looking for businesses to help us with research to quantify the real world benefits of drones in order to build a case study.
If you're interested or even if you’re just curious, we're happy to discuss anything drone related, no obligation, get in touch!
We're excited to be offering these innovative services to our clients and proving the benefits that they can bring to businesses taking advantage of them!
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Remember.... not just for pretty pictures!
Thanks for reading!
UK CAA PFCO No 8790