Drone usage within the built environment is growing rapidly, whether you’re a surveyor, site manager or sales manager, drones are not replacing human dependency but improving efficiency. Here’s the top ten drone usage within the construction industry.
1. Building surveys
The use of drones to capture roof visibility is proving extremely efficient by removing the need to erect scaffolding, saving time and money, as well as providing accurate visibility.
2. Construction site inspections
Conducting inspections on a busy construction site can be complicated, time consuming and presents health and safety risks. Adopting drone usage not only removes any safety risks but provides accurate footage which can be digitally stored.
3. Maintenance inspections
Routine inspections of towers, scaffolding, bridges and sky-scrapers can be a costly but necessary exercise. Drones provide a much easier and efficient alternative providing real-time footage to surveyors and engineers.
4. Project progress reports
Progress reports normally include multiple site photographs on a monthly basis to analyse progression. By utilising drones a series of aerial shots and videos can quickly capture additional footage to provide more accurate insight into site progression.
5. Site logistics
Construction sites are a buzz with deliveries of both material and machinery, moving cranes and cherry pickers, which are not always delivered on schedule. Drones are becoming extremely popular in providing real-time visibility of logistic activity on the ground.
6. Live feed / virtual walk around
Drones are becoming a vital tool in gaining real-time updates on high-risk sites. Utilising First Person View (FPV) technology, a drone camera can stream footage to the project team in real-time. This exercise can be enhanced further by the use of Virtual Reality (VR) glasses.
7. Health and safety inductions
Health and safety inductions are an absolute necessity but can often seem monotonous. However the inclusion of drones to fly over the site can demonstrate moving cranes, active excavation, etc to identify health and safety risks in real-time, making it much more practical and real.
8. Promotional photography
Estate agents continual compete to provide the most enticing shots, as drones have the ability to capture photos from unique angles and impressive 4k HD video it’s no wonder they are becoming a marketing asset.
9. Point cloud / laser scanning
It’s difficult for surveyors to gain access to a suitable location to laser scan high parts of a building, meaning the point cloud is returned missing vital information. Laser scanning from drones has become a recognised method of capturing the exact detail of topography, building and can provide the missing piece to point cloud scan for input into Building Information Models (BIM).
10. Thermal Imaging recording
Similar to laser scanning, drones can be used to take aerial thermal imaging recordings which can be used to assess potential cold spots in buildings or hot spots in areas holding electrical components. This can give engineers and surveyors essential information when trying to identify and rectify building defects.
It’s important to keep up-to-date with how technology is being adopted within the construction industry not only from an efficiency perspective but to ensure you are adapting your own skills to accommodate and acclimatise side by side with technology.