An inspections and asset visualisation organisation has placed an Intel drone at the centre of a surveillance project in a bid to bolster its asset management.
Australia-based Airscope deployed the Intel Falcon 8+ drone to develop computer-generated 3-D models of its hydrocarbon processing facilities off the North West shelf of Australia and in the Cooper Basin.
Industrial digitisation is predicted to generate $421 billion (£302 billion) in cost reductions and additional revenue each year for the next five years worldwide, according to a report by PwC. 3-D modelling of resource assets by companies like Airscope is one way of contributing to and driving this digital revolution that is transforming industry.
Airscope’s director, Chris Leslie, and its chief controller, Francois Alberts – both trained commercial airline pilots – saw the potential opportunities drone technology could offer to the resource sector. They reshaped their careers to work with software, survey and geospatial specialists to develop new ways for large resources companies to manage their physical assets.
“When people think of drones operating in industrial applications, they think of inspections collecting data from hard-to-reach places,” Leslie said. “Our business has evolved beyond this where the real efficiencies and return on investment for the client come from providing a digital 3-D representation of their physical assets.
“We made the transition to asset visualisation because UAV inspection only gave clients a fraction of the story; without context, the full potential of images captured cannot be realised. So now we create a virtual canvas of the entire site using airborne photogrammetry, ground photogrammetry and laser scanning. Once the virtual canvas is created, you can paint any operational or planning data on it, to serve as a human medium to access and interact with big data.”