How Drones are Used to Measure Stockpiles

How Drones are Used to Measure Stockpiles

Drones in Mining and Aggregates, Part One: 

Aggregate stockpilesWord is starting to get out about commercial drones, and their ability to provide valuable aerial data, functional 3D models and accurately measure stockpiles in a fraction of the time required using traditional methods.  While it’s not necessarily the drones that quantify the stockpiles—the high-tech cameras, sensors and data-analyzing software connected with the drones do the heavy lifting—this technology is helping mining operations and aggregate producers the world over to streamline essential tasks, thereby saving a great deal of time and money.

But how exactly does this drone technology work?  Let’s start with some basics, including the steps involved in stockpile measurement, and then take a look at how drone technology is saving mining and aggregate businesses money and time in the real world (spoiler: it’s not only through stockpiles).

Why Are Drones in the News Right Now?
faa-part-107-dronesBefore we get into the specifics, you might be wondering why drones are such a hot topic; particularly in the US. In August of 2016, the FAA officially began certification testing for commercial drone use without a pilot’s license. In order to legally provide a service like stockpile measurement in the past, one would need an actual pilot’s license and an exemption from the FAA, known as section 333.

Under the new rules, UAV pilots that are certified through the FAA via “Part 107” can legally provide commercial drone services in the United States. This allows businesses in a number of different industries to legally and more affordably use drone technology to streamline tasks and gain competitive advantage.

Man Uses Drone for stockpilesDrone Options: Purchase vs. Service

Companies can take advantage of this drone technology by either purchasing their own drone package (UAV, high-tech camera with essential sensors, software analysis package, etc) to quantify stockpiles or by hiring a qualified provider to come out and fly the site.

Buying a drone equipped to provide accurate stockpile data is, of course, not cheap. For this reason, the trend appears to favor the service model.  The industry as a whole is still in its infancy, but qualified drone service providers like Diverse Flight Solutions can periodically fly a site to provide accurate inventory measurements of any number of stockpiles, as often as need.  Price will often be reduced as frequency  of service increases.

Next Page: Step-by-Step – How Drones are Used to Measure Stockpiles

Drones for Agriculture in Tampa

Drones For Agricultural Crop Surveillance

farming-portfolio1Explore the benefits that DFS agriculture drones (A.K.A. UAVs or UASs) can offer modern farmers and crop scouting.

Using drones for crop surveillance can drastically increase farm crop yields while minimizing the cost of walking the fields or airplane fly-over filming. Using our Imaging system, you can view composite video showing the health of your crops.

Utilize Advanced agricultural drone technology for the farming and agriculture industries with intuitive, actionable intelligence that drives costs down and improves crop performance. Reap the benefits of precise crop scouting from above.


The Benefits of Drones in Farming

  • Increase Yields
    • Find potentially yield limiting problems in a timely fashion.
  • Save Time
    • While all farmers know the value of scouting their crops few actually have time to cover the acres on foot.
  • Return on Investment
    • At an average of $2 per acre for a walking visual inspection or an aerial survey to take an image of crop fields, the ROI on the purchase of an aerial helicopter drone can be met quickly. In most operations, the ROI for our drones can be achieved in a crop season or less, leaving you owning a drone that reduces your operating costs and improves your crop yield by giving you the timely information you need for quick management intervention.
  • Ease of use
    • UAV products can be very complex to set-up and operate, but with our preset standards we allow new operators to have confidence in operating from the beginning.
  • Integrated GIS mapping
    • Draw field borders for flight pattern
  • Crop Health Imaging
    • Seeing the true health of your field in a color contrast allows you to see how much sunlight is being absorbed by the crop canopy.
    • Identify Crop Stress, Track Rough Plants & Detect Early Infestations
  • Failsafe – The Drone Flies Home
    • As an added safety net with the flip of switch your  Drone will return to its original takeoff location

With a drone or UAV you can capture highly accurate images of your fields, covering up to hundreds of acres in a single flight. Without the cost and hassle of manned services. At a far greater resolution than satellite imagery provides, even when there is cloud cover.

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