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Local council discovers benefits of UAVs

UAVs are providing local councils with the means to survey a range of projects, from eroding landscapes to other infrastructure concerns. 

Local councils around Australia are tasked with managing a range of products that are integral to the safe operation of their jurisdictions. From inspecting roads and land masses to surveying public utilities, it can be difficult and expensive to keep tabs on each and every project. 

Thankfully, there's a cost-effective solution currently being employed by local governments and other organisations that conduct aerial surveillance. With respect to unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) - or drones as they are commonly referred to - many project managers are finding inventive ways to put them to use.

Often, these devices are equipped with high-definition cameras or 3D scanning equipment so teams can gather useful data and imagery for the landmark or facility they're inspecting. 

Kiwi council finds innovative use for UAVs
uav The Waitaki District Council, located in North Otago on New Zealand's South Island, recently made the news with its inventive use of UAVs in the surveying process. 

According to the news website Stuff.co.nz, the council is using UAVs to photograph and map the degree of erosion alongside a coastal road in the region. The organisation, with the assistance of a local construction company, will complete the exercise once every six or 12 months to track the progress of the landscape's deformation. 

In this example, UAVs afforded a unique opportunity for the council to complete the project. Safety concerns prevented the council from surveying parts of the landscape in the past. Without drones, the survey could not have been conducted at this level. 

What else could local councils survey?
As with other emerging technologies, such as 3D printing, the potential uses for drones are almost limitless when the devices are in the right hands. It's not just landscaping and environmental features that can be surveyed more effectively with UAVs, but buildings and other structures as well.

Artist and inventor Isaac Budmen assessed UAVs' role in the building inspection process by scanning US-based Syracuse University's Holden Observatory. 

The process involved flying a camera-equipped drone around the structure, which resulted in more 400 photographs that were then created into a 3D model with a software application. 

In these cases, scanning projects provides a perfect accompaniment to building information modelling processes, providing design teams with a range of data that can be used as the project progresses. 

Getting started
There are a range of regulations you need to comply with when using UAVs for commercial purposes, see our infographic to learn more about how to operate your UAV safely and effectively.

Redstack can assist by providing aerial UAV services for you, or Redstack can provide all the software, hardware, training and support you need to obtain and operate your own UAV.  Contact one of our UAV consultants today to discuss a customised solution to meet your specific needs.

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