Drones in Construction
7 Ways Drones Are Being Used In Construction
Drones have become a crucial tool for construction companies in the past several years to help them keep workers safe, reduce costs and improve their operations. So how are companies using drones for construction? Below we explore seven use cases for how to use drones for construction.
1) Construction Progress Monitoring
There is a large benefit to using drones for tracking construction site progress. The lack of standardized documentation for progress tracking makes the lives of project stakeholders more difficult. Using traditional methods it is extremely time-consuming for project managers to walk around the site to try and visualize progress or inspect safety issues. Drones facilitate this process by providing site documentation which allows project managers to win back time and work more days offsite/virtually as well as on other more pressing tasks. This improved efficiency and quality control can also be useful for subcontractor management and quality assurance.
2) Drone Site Surveys
Traditionally site surveys are a time consuming and resource-intensive task that would take 2-3 weeks from accepting the survey, collecting data than processing it into deliverables (pdf/cad/maps/point cloud) now can be done in a matter of days with drones and drone data processing software. Aerial surveying methods streamline this entire process while capturing oftentimes even more precise and accurate data in a fraction of the time.
3) Stockpile Volumetric Analysis
When collecting aerial data for a site survey via a drone, drone data analytics software such as that used by Skye Link can process those image sets to gather very accurate volumetric data. Use these to audit stockpiles, monitor progress, or conduct other volumetric measurements which may be a more laborious process to obtain from traditional methods. This data can be analyzed for a wide range of purposes. Determine erosion in and around existing stockpiles and determine change over time on stockpiles with heavy activity. The fast, efficient, and accurate data delivered from drones will allow for maximum operational efficiency.
4) Topography, Terrain, & Elevation Modeling
Traditional ground surveying methods may need a month to map a dangerous 100-acre site but using UAV technology the same 100-acre site can be flown in a day. The increased speed and automation when using drones provides companies the ability to safely take on and complete more jobs in less time, leading to money saved and increased revenue.
By conducting drone site surveys precise topography and elevation data can be collected and used to create contour models, do point-by-point elevation reporting, and more. All-terrain, elevation, earthwork data is subsequently downloadable to BIM, CAD, GIS software that can be integrated into existing engineering workflows.
5) LiDAR – Light Detection & Ranging
Use LiDAR to collect even more precise and accurate data for terrain or elevation maps. LiDAR sends light pulses that can penetrate tree cover and foliage to collect accurate terrain data. This can be used to quickly survey those foliage dense areas with high accuracy rather than conducting a land survey which would be an arduous and time-consuming process without a guarantee of accurate data. Track installment and site progress using LiDAR. Highly detailed LiDAR models will allow asset managers to keep track of and confirm project milestones helping to make effective and cost-saving decisions.
6) Structural, Asset, & Safety Inspections
Ability to inspect difficult to reach areas or potentially dangerous areas. Mitigate the cost and risk associated with placing a worker in a dangerous situation. Most often these inspections take place in tight confined spaces with the presence of hazardous materials or equipment. Utilizing the latest unmanned systems allows reduced asset downtimes and costs associated with PPE, training, and permitting. Reach maximum efficiency over the traditional inspection methods saving deployment and inspection time.
7) Infrared Thermal Imaging
Collecting precise temperature data through the use of thermal drone surveys has many benefits throughout various phases of the construction lifecycle in a wide range of project types. Infrared drone data provides valuable information about soil and ground quality prior to breaking ground. Thermal imaging can also help detect heat loss and water leaks in the building envelope after project completion. Additionally, aerial infrared inspections will identify hot spots, anomalies, or other potential safety issues in various infrastructure and assets.
Skye Link’s Construction Drone Services:
- Construction Progress Monitoring: Weekly pdf reports with overview images of site progress and key data points detailing information such as earthwork, volumetric information, hardware installation tracking, general site progress, etc. Reports can be customized to capture relevant data points depending on the type of construction. Remotely verify progress, streamline job site documentation and track progress over time with consistent data & visuals.
- Site/Topography Surveys: Collect detailed topography information to produce contour models, point cloud, orthomosiac, digital terrain or elevation models. Depending on deliverable type can be delivered as .dwg, .dxf, .las file type.
- Stockpile/Volumetric Measurement: Understand earthwork changes with increased knowledge of inventory, improved documentation of stockpiles, accurate measurements for internal use and for reporting to external stakeholders, and streamlined inventory material audits.
- Timelapse Creations: Video timelapses can be created from various timelines such as one days work or over months throughout the entire lifecycle of the project. Great for marketing material!
- Specialized Imaging: Thermal & LiDAR (Light Detection & Ranging)
Why Skye Link for Construction?
We are a professional UAV service company integrating drones into construction operations and streamlining the aerial data collection process. Our service platform allows us to provide on-demand nationwide drone services like aerial surveying, construction site progress monitoring, stockpile surveys and volumetric measurements, structural safety inspections, 2d/3d aerial mapping, aerial topography surveys & contour modeling, thermal mapping, infrared inspections, LiDAR imaging, and much more.
Interested in Learning More? Let’s Connect!
Talk to our professional team to get your questions answered and begin utilizing the power of drones and aerial data to effectively identify, monitor, and inspect commercial roofs.
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