I am excited to give you a preview of the AirGon Bring Your Own Drone (BYOD) Mapping Kit. What better way to introduce a small, low cost approach to mapping than with our BYOD Marketing Rep, Molly. OK, OK a bit of nepotism – she is my granddaughter.
The BYOD Mapping Kit is a collection of software and training that allows you to do mapping with a low cost DJI drone. Currently the Phantom and Inspire platforms are supported with the new DJI Mavic soon to be added.
The BYOD Mapping Kit includes:
- Map Pilot for DJI – Autopilot software for your DJI drone (iOS device required)
- Agisoft PhotoScan for creating ortho mosaics and 3D point clouds
- AirGon Topolyst for checking accuracy, adjusting/cleaning data and generating analytic products such as hill shades, volumetrics, digitized mapping features, profiles, topographic contours and similar products
- A three month Level 1 Subscription to Reckon, our Amazon Web Services hosted analytic data management and delivery portal
- Web Training
- Monthly training webinars restricted to AirGon mapping customers
The kit is priced at US $7,990. Just add your own low cost DJI platform and you are in the mapping business! This is a great way to get your feet wet with drone mapping. While this kit is suitable for service providers who want to start out with a conservative approach to drone mapping, it is also a great way for owner/operators to experiment with the viability of this approach to data analysis. For example, we have been working extensively with a paper mill who uses the BYOD with an Inspire to produce volumetrics for wood chip and log piles. Another example is an asphalt shingle company who is measuring volumes of raw and processed shingles with a Phantom. Now granted, you are not going to collect accurate 1 foot contours with a Phantom but you can do some serious analytics that are good enough for many estimation purposes. This initial BYOD Mapping Kit requires an Apple iOS device (iPhone or iPad) for the autopilot. We will be adding an Android option by Q1 of 2017.
Of course, you could assemble this yourself by individually acquiring the components. However, the most important aspect of the BYOD Mapping Kit is the on-going training you will receive as a member of the program. We have performed over 250 site mapping projects in the past year and have learned what does not work (almost everything!) and what does work. For example, you will not get anything close to correct without a process for focal length determination (no, it is not what is written on the lens!), elevation bias removal and a number of other tricks. Our paper mill customer was experiencing volumetric errors of around 25% using a mainstream point cloud/basic volumetric tool prior to engaging with us. We did some diagnostics on the process and improved their accuracy to within 5% of reference (reference was a very high accuracy survey conducted by AirGon using our AV-900 helicopter with PPK and survey ground control). In fact, one of the errors is a transformation problem within the DJI recording software itself. I can assure you that the BYOD Mapping Program will provide a very rapid Return on Investment via the training alone. If you decide to move up to a survey grade drone, the PhotoScan and Topolyst software remain the best possible solution. Thus your total investment is preserved as you migrate to more capable systems.
If you just want to collect data but do not want to do routine data processing, no problem. We can do direct data processing for you via our AirGon Services Group or direct you to one of our AirGon Partner Program members.
If you are interested in becoming an AirGon BYOD Mapper, contact Ashlee Hornbuckle at firstname.lastname@example.org. She will be happy to share detailed information on this program with you.