Infrastructure Inspections – Drones are an Important Solution

The use of drones to perform what in many cases are high risk, infrastructure inspections is on the rise. From bridges to pipelines to high voltage transmission towers drones equipped with the right sensor can keep inspectors out of harms way.

photo of Infrastructure Inspection

Infrastructure Inspection

From Steven Perez in a Skyward blog post.

In America and overseas, the built environment shows signs of strain. Major bridges have buckled, energy grid outages from severe weather are now common, and dams have failed. It’s the result of several factors: population growth, climate change, and worn out infrastructure systems. The American Society of Civil Engineers estimates the U.S. alone needs $3.6 trillion in infrastructure investment by 2020 just to bring the country’s support systems to acceptable levels.

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Posted in 3D Modeling, airborne LiDAR, Construction, Feature Extraction, Infrastructure, Inspection, Laser Scanning, Lidar, Mapping, Mobile LiDAR, Robots, Sensors, UAS, UAVs | Tagged , , , , , | Leave a comment

3D Laser Scanning is Being Used to Improve Health

Two separate articles this week referred to the use of 3D laser scanning to improve one’s health. In the first case it was in support of the shape of an infant’s head and the second better design of hearing aids.

From an article by Jordan Verdadeiro at West Dakota Fox

Any abnormalities in a child will be scary for a parent. There are a set of twins from Harvey who were born healthy, but who’s heads began to flatten. Jordan Verdadeiro spoke with the family and a certified orthotist who is helping get these baby boy’s head shape back how it should be.

Photo of Babies 3D Laser Scanning Used to Fit Helmets

3D Laser Scanning Used to Fit Helmets

This is Bausten and Huxley, and these twins are in cranial remolding helmets. Their father, Cayle Paulson says they were born two months early.

“They spent their first five weeks in the nic-u here in Bismarck, so through time at home and sleeping on their back, they slowly kind of developed a flatness on the back of their head,” said Paulson.

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Underwater Drone Eelume Moves Like a Snake

Having just watched the video below I am at a nearly total loss for words to describe what this underwater drone is capable of doing.

Since my days in earning my Ph.D. in marine geotechnical engineering I have known that the engineering required for offshore  platforms is among the most demanding in the world. Space exploration and nuclear power are right up there, but I am biased towards offshore. The Eelume “snake” is just another example of the sophistication of the offshore industry.

From an article in SPE – Oil Gas Facilities.

Photo of Underwater Drone Eelume

Underwater Drone Eelume

Equinor is installing an underwater drone in Norway’s Trondheim Fjord for testing and will soon deploy it for seabed maintenance work at the Asgard field in the Norwegian Sea.

The company developing the drone as well as the drone itself are named Eelume. The drone is described by the company as a snake-like, self-propelled robotic arm “whose slender and flexible body can transit over long distances.” It consists of several modules that allow it to be connected in different combinations to form various types of vehicles. Sensors and tools can be mounted anywhere on the drone.

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Posted in 3D Modeling, artificial intelligence, Autonomous vehicles, computer vision, Data, driverless vehicles, Environmental, Inspection, Laser Scanning, Lidar, Orgs, remote sensing, Robots, Sensors, Technology, Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Ship Building Is Making the Transition to 3D

Ship building is being transformed from 2D paper to 3D digital models. Even decades-old aircraft carriers are being mapped onto digital models at Newport News Shipbuilding.

From an article in Defense One.

Image of Ship Building in 3D

Ship Building in 3D (Chris Oxley, Huntington Ingalls Industries

NEWPORT NEWS, Va. — When the USS George Washington took shape here in the late 1980s, endless paper blueprints guided the welders and shipfitters of Newport News Shipbuilding. Now, with the aircraft carrier back in a drydock for its midlife overhaul, shipyard workers are laser-scanning its spaces and bulkheads.

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Skanska is Using 3D Laser Scanning to Inform and Connect

Skanska, one of the world’s largest construction firms has intergrated 3D laser scanning into their core workflows and that of their subcontractors.

Image of site Skanska Uses Scanning, Photography and Videography

Skanska Uses Scanning, Photography and Videography

This is from an article in The Architects Newspaper.

The Swedish multinational construction and development company Skanska is responsible for many of the world’s biggest building projects. Right now in New York City alone, it is overseeing two massive infrastructural and architectural undertakings: The Moynihan Train Hall and the LaGuardia Terminal B redevelopment.

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Posted in 3D Modeling, AI, BIM, Business Development, Construction, Data, Hardware, Indoor Mapping, Infrastructure, Inspection, Laser Scanning, Sensors, Software, Surveying, Surveying Engineering, virtual reality, Visualization | Tagged , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Digital License Plates for Drones Are Coming

Mariah Scott, the President of Skyward testified before Congress last September making the case for remote identification of drones which can be likened to digital license plates.

Image of UAS Digital License Plates for Drones

Digital License Plates for Drones

From the Skyward website.

There’s just one problem. Without a system for universal air traffic management – which would allow air traffic controllers and law enforcement to understand where drones are flying and for what purpose – utilities, telecommunications companies, engineering firms, and freight carriers can’t safely deploy autonomous drones, even if they are connected to 5G.

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Hydrogen Fuel Cells – Better UAV Power?

Lithium batteries provide relatively short duration flights and are restricted on most commercial airlines; internal combustion engines create air and noise pollution. Are hydrogen fuel cells going to provide the best option?

Photo of drone with Hydrogen Fuel Cells

Hydrogen Fuel Cells

From an article in sUAS News.

Like batteries, fuel cells are a source of DC power, and are clean and quiet. Unlike batteries, their power comes from converting a fuel—hydrogen—into energy. Unlike batteries they provide greater power output for longer. For drone operators, using fuel cells means more flying time.

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How to Select a Building Documentation Professional

There are two important announcements from the USIBD this week. The first is the availability of a free white paper with advice on how to select a building documentation professional. The second is you need to register now to save $250 off the registration fee for the USIBD Symposium this September in St. Louis, MO.

Logo for How to Select a Building Documentation Pro White Paper

How to Select a Building Documentation Pro White Paper

The U.S. Institute of Building Documentation (USIBD) is pleased to publish its first white paper entitled, Building Better Within Existing Conditions. This paper’s purpose is to help determine whether it makes sense to hire a Building Documentation Professional and, if so, how to go about selecting them.

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WeWork is Leveraging 3D BIM to Fuel Its Rapid Expansion

Not familiar with WeWork? They are like ride sharing companies Uber or Lyft, but their game is sharing downtown office space.

Scan of WeWork Office Space

WeWork Office Space

Co-founders Adam Neuman, who had started a baby clothes business and Miguel McKelvey an architect worked in the same building in Brooklyn, NY. They both noticed that a large part of the building was vacant. After a lot of effort they convinced the landlord to let them open a co-working space for entrepreneurs in 2008.

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Kitty Hawk Wishes to Re-define Mobility with the Flying Car

Kitty Hawk has a simple corporate vision – to free people from traffic by using a flying car to re-define the term mobility.

Photo of Flyer by Kitty Hawk

Flyer by Kitty Hawk

In case you might be thinking that this Silicon Valley start-up can’t be serious, then you should have a look at the CEO’s credentials. Sebastian Thrun was the founder of X (previously Google X), where he led the development of the self-driving car, Google Glass, and other projects. He spent several years as a professor at Stanford University where he led the Stanford Racing Team, whose “Stanley” won the DARPA Grand Challenge and he has assembled an impressive team of aviation visionaries.

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