Use drones for surveying? Even if you’re a seasoned pro in the drone surveying, there’s an easy way to ensure your drone surveying program is as safe, fast and reliable as possible.
I’m obsessed with this drone surveying checklist, created by surveying company Aerotas and intended to always be kept in your drone case and used as a reference at every step of the flight process. It’s great to have every step of the way: when planning/charging/packing equipment to make sure you have everything (forgetting SD cards is the actual worst); out in the field to run through site prep, aircraft inspection, and flight preparations; and after the flight to keep a written record of all of your flights.
Hey, even pilots with thousands of hours of flying time use a checklist. This version is based on a checklist introduced by Boeing in 1935. And this version is designed specifically for drone surveying. It ensures you don’t miss any legal requirements, you’re up to date with your tech, you’re practicing good drone industry etiquette, and your hardware is good to go.
The second part of the checklist includes mission planning guidance to use for setting ground control points, and collecting field data.
The checklist was designed by the team at Aerotas (a friend of The Drone Girl), a California-based drone company that has overseen more than 3,500 drone surveying missions. It supports any drone, whether you use a DJI Phantom 4 RTK, a senseFly eBee Plus fixed-wing, or your own custom-built drone.
If you email them, Aerotas will send you a free, laminated version of their checklist. Submit your contact information here to receive your checklist on Aerotas’s site (note: this is not managed by Drone Girl, and your data will be collected by Aerotas, which is not affiliated by Drone Girl).
The surveying industry is quickly becoming one of the biggest adopters of drones in the commercial space. Use of drones in the surveying industry has grown a whopping 171% year-over year between 2017 and 2018, according to a report from Drone Deploy.