A new video created by Swisscom Ventures highlights a research expedition sponsored by Moncler to explore the deepest ice caves in the world using Flyability’s Elios drone.
In partnership with Swisscom, Flyability released a video showcasing the way that its indoor drone technology was used by a team of researchers to explore and document some of the deepest ice caves in the world, located in Greenland.
The expedition was sponsored by apparel company Moncler and took place over two weeks in 2018 on the Greenland ice sheet, the second largest body of ice in the world after Antarctica.
Research focused on an area about 80 kilometers east of Kangerlussuaq, where scientists wanted to study the movement of water deep underground to better understand the effects of climate change on the melting ice.
In a past expedition, scientists were only able to repel to a depth of about 130 meters within the giant vertical ice shafts (called moulins) that led to the underground rivers they wanted to study. On this expedition scientists used the Elios, Flyability’s collision-tolerant drone, to reach the very bottom of the moulins and learn more about the movement of the water and the shape and stability of the ice shafts.
Flyability product manager, Geoffroy le Pivain, said: “Entering a moulin that runs 300 meters deep is very dangerous, especially when the conditions farther down within the shaft are unknown.
“Thanks to its collision-tolerance and other features we’ve developed to help inspectors fly in challenging indoor environments, the Elios presented a unique solution for explorers to reach the bottom of the moulin.”
The mission was led by Francesco Sauro, Professor of Planetary Geology and Exploration at the University of Bologna. He was supported by a team of world renowned geologists, glaciologists, speleologists, geographers, biologists, and Arctic explorers.
Flyability co-founder and CTO Adrien Briod, added: “At Flyability, scientific discovery and exploration are dear to our hearts. The core focus of our work is on creating indoor inspection solutions to replace the need for people to enter dangerous, confined spaces. But we also want to help expand the boundaries of human knowledge by accessing places that couldn’t otherwise be reached, and the Greenland expedition really showcases that aspect of our work.”