Aerial Drones Used to Survey Dangerous Locations
Aerial Drones are being adopted as the go-to data collection solution for hazardous and dangerous industries such as oil and gas, petrochemicals and construction sites. Maximizing human safety and minimizing pre-safety planning and risk is top priority for these industries.
Drones are quickly replacing humans who had to be placed in dangerous locations, terrain or environments in order to gather critical data. Drones are being piloted into areas under oil rigs, along power lines, over top oil and chemical spills and mine tailing ponds where they effectively gather survey-grade data, quickly while minimizing risk.
BP has used LiDar in its Alaska operations to help drivers stay on course in low-visibility conditions. LiDar-equipped drones can also provide an overhead view of pipeline conditions, alerting the company to areas damaged by icy conditions.
Shell is a company employing Aerial Drones in its operations, using them to monitor hard-to-reach areas. Drones allow the company to use a camera to check the status of places under an oil rig and other places where it may be dangerous to send people.
Inspecting Bridges for damage after an earthquake relies heavily on visual assessment from experienced field inspectors. Drones now take over that role and provide high definition imagery and data to those field inspectors offsite and out of harm’s way.
Inspection of Pipelines in Alaska proved a perfect scenario for Aerial Drones to demonstrate their capabilities. Regular air-craft flying that low in the unpredictable Alaskan winds, snow and ice posed a safety risk. UAVs armed with HD cameras are able to effectively fly low and offer consistent data collection despite the rugged and windy conditions.
AT&T is using drones to inspect cell towers, a move that could save lives. From 2013-2016 there were 34 communication tower-related fatalities.
Drones are used in data collection for management of wildfires. They offer a faster and safer alternative than having manned teams survey the area.
As the inception of drones started with its use in defense, it is the most important area even today where drones are used. But, the technology has evolved much more. Now smaller and portable drones are being used by ground forces on a regular basis. Drones in the military are used mostly for surveillance and offensive operations.
As cameras can be mounted on drones they have now become lifesavers as well. Drones can be very useful during times of natural disaster for the surveillance of disaster-affected areas. After consequences of natural disaster, UAVs can be used to assess damage, locate victims, and deliver aid. In certain circumstances, they are being used to prevent disasters altogether.
Aerial Drones are having a positive impact on the world by eliminating the risk to human lives and collecting valuable data in locations that are dangerous, toxic, or otherwise inaccessible.