What a Drone Can Do For You? – Part Two

Image of drone flying across a grassy plain with a forest and mountain in the background.

In the first part of my blog series, I discussed the use of drones to facilitate land mapping for surveys. I demonstrated how a drone can cut costs and time needed to provide those who need it, a survey of a piece of land safely and efficiently. 

In this blog, I look at the benefits to using a similar process for agricultural enterprises. In the United States, drone use in agriculture and vegetable growing is quite common and the benefits are now becoming more widely appreciated in the UK. 

Being able to feed an ever increasing world population together with political instability, the importance of utilising every possible bit of good crop growing land with efficiency is now more needed than ever. Drones can and do figure massively in this endeavour. By taking an image with a drone of an area of land, all sorts of useful data can be obtained. As a simple example, a farmer has planted a field of wheat. He/she needs to be able to manage that field while it is growing. How much fertiliser and spray does the crop need? Before drones, the farmer would blanket fertilise or spray a crop, but now if a drone image is taken showing the whole crop from the air, the farmer/agronomist can see where the crop is strong and vibrant and where some help and extra nutrition would be an advantage. Like with other land mapping with a drone, the farmer can see, from the one image, what the plant population is and work out how much fertiliser for example is needed on an area to bring it up to the standard of the rest of the crop. He/she can even count the actual number of plants in one area compared with another as the EXIF data is captured on every image taken and is accurate down to 1 centimetre. This data, not only saves time, but also money. Why spend hundreds of pounds/dollars on providing nutrition for a part of a crop that doesn’t need it. Agricultural researchers also find the use of drone very valuable in collecting data on a regular basis, so they can establish what is working within their research and what is not. Again, a drone is the best tool for gathering this valuable information.

Perhaps drone roof surveyors are one of the biggest users of drones. Gone are the days when a roof surveyor has to climb a ladder and titter about on top of loose tiles, or the need to employ a helicopter or put up expensive scaffolding. The surveyor can use the drone to take video and images of a whole roof or part of a roof to identify what if anything is needed for maintenance. Did you know that government buildings and many other commercial buildings in the UK have to conduct a rood survey of some sort or another for insurance purposes every five years? That – I am told – is the law!

Another fantastic use of a drone these days, is for search and rescue. Yes the drone needs extra camera equipment to carry our search and rescue missions, mainly a thermal imaging camera, (which doesn’t come cheap!) but the ability to send a drone where it would be unsafe for the rescuers to go is an example of just how drone technology is so valuable to us all.

Finally, I have to say this, there are many so called ‘drone operators’ disguising themselves as professionals. They are breaking the law in conducting drone operations for commercial reasons without the necessary qualifications and permissions and can be sent to prison for a criminal offence. The same is true for someone who commissions a non-qualified drone pilot. So beware!! Not only that; for those pilots who have had the training, got their qualifications and registered both themselves and their aircraft in accordance with the law; have spent many many hours and a considerable amount of money to get where they are, so I do implore any commissioning person to choose a bone fide pilot, even if they do charge  more than Harry down the road. That way, we all keep safe and keep flying for the benefit of us all.Goldeneye providing Aerial Solutions for You.

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