Drone Technology and RoofingMarch 5, 2015
From deliveries by Amazon drones to nightly news stories of drone collisions, as a society we are moving rapidly towards the use of Unmanned Aerial Systems (UAS). In roofing, there have been companies in the past who have sold the idea of photographing homes using drones, air balloons and all sorts of devices but the concept has never really been functional, scalable or sustainable.
It has never been about the type of vehicle that captures the imagery but about the cameras and processes that enable the high-resolution and geo-coded accuracy of aerial imagery today. EagleView® Technologies, utilizing Pictometry® image technology, continues to focus on image capture and the subsequent data extraction from that imagery. The use of drones holds potential for capturing higher resolution imagery than ever before.
Understanding that the use of UAS is closer than ever to gaining regulatory approval, EagleView has led the formation of the Property Drone Consortium (PDC). Chaired by EagleView CEO Chris Barrow, the consortium represents a collaboration among insurance carriers, construction industry leaders and supporting enterprises that have agreed to work together to promote research, development and the establishment of regulations for the use of UAS technology across the insurance and construction industries.
As an independent, third-party technology provider and industry innovator in the capture of aerial imagery, EagleView has agreed to provide its research and development expertise and patented technologies to the consortium. “With over twenty years of developing aerial solutions that capture property information, EagleView believes it can utilize patented Pictometry image technologies to further the safe, efficient and scalable use of drone technology for property data collection,” stated Chris Barrow, president and CEO of EagleView.
EagleView has over eight years of research and development into aerial image capture utilizing UAS hardware and software. “There are many vehicles that can be used to enable the capture of aerial imagery and data,” explained Rishi Daga, EagleView executive vice president of commercial sales. “As the regulatory landscape evolves, we believe this consortium will be critical to the process by ensuring that additional data and proven research results are presented in support of sound decision making, for both the insurance and construction industries.”
“We believe this, coupled with the expertise of the charter members will enable the consortium to provide strong and stable information and education to drive regulatory change and development of the usage of drones for data collection. With numerous carriers and providers of key industry services already committed, this technology initiative will have far-reaching benefits for all involved,” continued Barrow.
The possibility for UAS to be used as building inspection tools is very appealing considering the software potentially being able to turn video into CAD files. “When we look at the current state of the industry and where we are going, drones are already a major source of discussion. It’s likely that in the not-too-near future they will also have a place in the back of contractors’ trucks,” Daga noted. “We see a strong use case for drones in field inspections for warranties, repairs and insurance claims. The time saved for all portions of the market by utilizing drones could be huge but we must find safe and sustainable technology in order to scale. That is the mission of this consortium.”
To learn more about the consortium and sign up for updates, visit www.propertydrone.org.