Drones are Becoming Essential in the Built Environment
From Developers surveying land before purchasing it for a future building, engineering surveying existing buildings and construction teams recording the progress of a project, drones are finding a permanent place within the AEC Industry.
Unmanned aircraft systems (UAS) have long since moved passed the days of only being relevant in government and highly secure industries. They are becoming more standard pieces of equipment within Architecture, Engineering and especially Construction firms.
When commercial drones first hit the market big in 2015, the immediate jump to invest was outrageous. With so many advantages to using a drone within construction operations, how could you not adopt this new technology?
The captured images and HD video can be used to help site inspectors understand existing conditions and augment the team’s understanding of progress and as-built conditions. The new advancements for drones are largely focused on the camera and the lenses to help companies capture an even higher quality of information. There are even programs being released that will allow a drone to scan a building and relate that scan to existing drawings.
What does this mean for you?
C1S adopted drone technology in late 2017 into early 2018 and began to advance our lines of service right away. Two of our team members became certified pilots and began using their skills for Facility Condition Assessments. This process involves inspecting and reporting the condition of a building and all the equipment used in operations. The drone allows us to capture a quick look at the entire site from a perspective that was either too costly or impossible to achieve before.
Safety is always our top priority, and the technology truly showed an impact when we started assessing taller structures, such as silos, without putting our employees at unnecessary risk.
We have installed a separate lens on our equipment that allows us to thermal scan structures and see where they are vulnerable to the elements.
Moving into the future, we will continue to use them in our FCAP program and in our construction division to better understand built conditions and to monitor and record major mechanical installations. Continuing to use the advanced lenses and integrating that information into point cloud data will be a major game changer for design-build firms and we are looking forward to implementing this advancement when it becomes ready for major market adoption.