"How Can Drones Add Value to Projects"

Drones, also known as unnamed aerial vehicles (UAVs), are being used for military defence purposes and in tech-savvy equipment for quite some time. However, one of the main adopters of this exciting technology is the construction and surveying industry. Drones have transformed the entire construction industry and redefined the way buildings are projected, designed, and maintained. Drones can do much more than just taking high-quality photos. Let’s have a look at how drones add value and simplify the entire construction procedure these days:

drones in construction

Pre-Construction Activities

Drones help to understand the land distribution and terrain once you purchase the land. You can capture images with drones to get a better understanding of your investment.

Here’s how drones can help in construction projects before they even get started:

Analyzing Site Locations

A drone having geolocation abilities can provide clear connections between your land and the neighbouring locations in terms of distance and relative boundary points. This helps surveyors as well as project managers to develop more realistic expectations on timelines and design elements. They are better able to communicate with their clients about what is and is not possible. All such information can be collected before starting construction on a site to avoid later amendments and design improvements that lead to additional unplanned costs.

Creating Site Plans

The images and data captured through drones add value by creating layouts that offer information about how to create different segments of the location. Project managers build their whole site plan and drawings based on those photographs and distribute different elements such as parks, buildings, footpaths, and landscaped areas.

Performing 3D Scans

One of the great applications of drone technology is photogrammetry. This is about scanning the existing structure and creating 3D models from it. This is quite helpful in renovating buildings because it provides a detail-oriented model without implementing any conditions. Besides that, clients can get a better understanding of their space as well as the outcome of renovation before construction starts.

3D Point Clouds
drones used in 3D

During Construction

Drones are commonly used as survey tools in the construction industry to perform progress checks and increased supervision.

Drones in Construction

Aerial footage from drones add value to a developer's work in the following ways:

Post Construction

You can also make use of drones once the construction is completed.

Here’s how:

Maintenance and Damage Check

There are some construction companies that make use of drone footage in the surveillance and security of their projects. This footage serves as another level of time-stamped proof that can be shared with clients later for maintenance purposes or damage assessment of the building.

Drones are very beneficial in situations like:

Drone Survey

Marketing

There is no technology better than drones to capture high-quality images or aerial shots. You can market your project or entire business by capturing real-looking photos of your place and running successful online marketing campaigns using them.

Final Words

For every project manager and builder, the surveying and designing phase of any construction project is hard to manage when it comes to timeline and cost. Planners and project managers have a lot on their plates in terms of monitoring the project, keeping everyone safe, and delivering their best for a certain period and budget. The traditional surveying methods are flawed and have certain limitations to them. They also take more time and require human labour.

However, drones can produce reliable data, track a wide range of areas, and inspect the ongoing progress efficiently and accurately. Besides that, they can do the job at a much lower cost as compared to traditional surveying methods. Moreover, they eliminate any risk to human life while working on a dangerous or difficult project.

If you have any questions on this topic, feel free to ask in the comments. Or, you may also contact HeliDrone Surveys for more information.

How do Drones help SurveyorsSee How do Drones help Surveyors from here. Surveyors find themselves operating in a whole range of different sectors including property purchases, land surveys, agriculture, and construction. While it’s a profession that has normally remained quite static in how technology is used. Developments in drone technology have made a big difference. 

How do Drones help Surveyors?

Drones lend themselves to multiple applications whether it’s for. Surveying land or checking over homes and business properties in urban locations. 

In the last decade, drones have gone from simple playthings and executive toys to serious disruptors in many industries. You cannot watch a film or TV series nowadays without a few seconds of some drone footage included.

How do Drones help Surveyors

The improvement in technology, especially where High definition cameras and other sensors are concerned. Is having a huge impact, even while the legal complications over drone operation are still being ironed out. 

Small and flexible

For your average surveyor, a drone is a fairly compact piece of kit to carry around. It can store in the back of the car or van and quickly put into action when needed. Drones are light and flexible and can use to survey everything from a large area of land to individual buildings. 

Compared to a helicopter or an airplane. A drone is able to fly closer to the building structure and obtain highly accurate images that can use in the evaluation process and report writing. 

Reducing surveying time

If you have to get a ladder out and climb up onto a roof every time you do a property survey. It can be pretty inconvenient not to mention dangerous in many situations. The use of a drone, in this case, makes sense. It can implement in next to no time and will cover large areas of a property in a short period. Taking high-quality images that can save and evaluate later. 

How do Drones help Surveyors

Reducing surveying costs and risks

The speed and accessibility that drones provide also helps to deliver on lowering overall costs. Not only does the survey take less time, but there’s also often no need for support teams to be included when exteriors are examined. 

Survey crews may also be subject to risks, particularly in remote locations. Drones help with reducing the potential for injury and limiting the size of the team needed. 

How do Drones help Surveyors

Accessing remote locations

One key area where drones are already being used in surveying is with remote locations. If you have a region that has dense undergrowth or marshland. For example, navigating it physically can be difficult and also perilous. A drone easily accesses these areas and, with the latest sensor technology. Various amounts of data can be collected easily and accurately. 

Another mention is the accessibility of buildings and getting into all those nooks and crannies. We can't see unless from above, here a drone comes into its own and the proof is there for everyone to see. Check out this photo - as the roof lights

where quite fragile the surveyor on-site needed to see the condition of the guttering surrounding the structure

How do Drones help Surveyors

How do Drones help Surveyors

Types of Drone Sensors

While drones themselves are proving popular with surveyors. They are simply a method of delivering the right technology to the place. Of much greater interest is the growth in different types of sensor that can deploy in a variety of surveying situations.

These currently include How do Drones help Surveyors:

How do Drones help Surveyors

Surveyors, Drones, and Regulations

As with any operator, surveyors have to comply with the rules and regulations that surround drone technology. Surveyors need to understand the legislation. As it relates to flying a drone in any urban area like a town or city. That includes having the right permissions to operate a drone commercially through the Civil Aviation Authority. Why not ask us here at HeliDrone Surveys to give you a quote

There’s no doubt that drones have proved an important tool for surveyors in many sectors. They are increasingly used for everything from property investigations to more complicated land surveys. Alongside these lightweight machines. The technology that is developed is also having a huge impact, revolutionizing many sectors in the process. 

Case study 2

Brief Case study 2: Photograph and video roof survey of Kingston Hospital, Regency Wing

The Regency wing of Case study 2 Kingston Hospital was built in the 1800s as such the roof requires constant maintenance. Our client direct us to find out the condition of the roof examining the chimney stacks, the pitch and elevation. Ridge tiles, pointing, guttering and general overall condition. Pretty much standard variables in most UAV inspections we complete.
Case study 2 Case study 2 Case study 2

The Survey:

As the area was very sensitive (an operational hospital) with public moving around the site we were directed to the project manager on site. After signing in and completing various administration tasks. Sometimes we are required to provide a H+ S report and operational manual, insurance etc...). We were shown the landing and take off site.  This was well away from the general public and had restricted access. So we were confident that there would be minimal public traffic on site.

The Procedure:

When surveying an area of this building size it is important to find the correct starting and finishing locations in order to proceed in a logical manner around the building. It saves duplication the survey areas. As such we started on the west side of the building with the sun on our backs.  As it was a very clear blue sky day (10mph max wind) we were working in a very contrast environment.
This has particular challenges especially in shadow areas, away from direct sunlight.  Here we must either use auto shutter and ISO settings or manually select them ourselves so that the client will see as much detail of the roof as possible.  Moving around the roof area we concentrate the camera on various inaccessible locations taking care to zoom in on any particular details we feel the surveyor may interest in.  There are generally all sorts of debris and maintenace issues. From plant growth to leaking gutters. Rendering damage to slates missing and pointing issues. Notice the chimney stacks and there overall condition.
Case study 2 Case study 2 Case study 2
Sometimes we don't have any representation from the client (we just get a brief). So we need to make sure we cover all details from every angle so that the surveyors report covers is comprehensive. As the building is so large it takes several batteries to complete the UAV survey and as per usual once we had finished. The sun went in! Overcast days are so much easier for completing photography as you do not encounter such high contrast images.

Case study 2 - Kingston Hospital

Once all stills photography was complete we continued with the video survey.  This is conduct in a 4K resolution as specify the client. The great thing is the the 4k video is almost as good as the stills and the surveys can often see even more detail. They can even get stills from the video to high light to their client any more signs of wear and tear.

Case study 2 Case study 2

The Conclusion:

As mentioned, this was quite a challenging environment in such a public space. During the course of the survey we had encounters with not only the general public. But also hospital management, concern  with privacy of the patients and noise. We had to reassure that no photographs were taken of individuals and we were only concern with the roof structure. Privacy is of paramount importance and we respect all private locations.
If you wish to have more information about our work please go to: https://www.helidronesurveys.co.uk
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