Drones offer a cost efficient way of improving a number of areas of a construction project, vastly cutting down the health and safety requirements of deploying staff to hard to access, high risk areas such as rooftops, and making regular inspection and monitoring both quick and easy.
Planning, Design and Mapping
At the planning stage, drones can provide a valuable asset in offering a quick and easy way to create a topographical map of a site. The high level of detail means that these can be taken to architects for the basis for their designs to maximise the site space, work around any problems and take advantage of any opportunities. Basing their designs on real world, accurate images can save time later by dealing with any problems at the design stage rather than having to make expensive adjustments during the construction process.
Maps are created with the drone flying in a pre-programmed grid to make sure that there are no errors or omissions and of course this can be done with a single pilot in a fraction of the time that it would take a team of ground based people, and also eliminate the possibility of measurement errors.
3D mapping of an area is also possible and this can be repeated at various stages during the construction to create a very visual way of assessing project progress.
Regular drone deployment during the construction process can also provide several very important functions. Firstly, it can inspect from a bird’s eye perspective the construction as it happens, allowing potential problems to be identified and address before the project progresses too far and repairs are expensive. They can also be helpful when it comes to managing the project progress and areas where the budget is being met or exceeded.
These regular flights can provide both photographic and video information that can be disseminated not only to the construction personnel but also to off site stakeholders to keep them informed of the project progress. The aerial perspective can offer a far more complete picture of the site progress than a ground level view and in a fraction of the time than a site walk through.
Thermal cameras can also be deployed to create a thermographic image of a site allowing efficiency to be assessed during construction. Insulation effectiveness, areas of heat loss and even water ingress become easily visible so that targeted teams of specialists can be deployed to take an necessary corrective action.
There is value to having detailed and regular photographic and video footage when the project is completed. It allows future generations to be able to see exactly what has gone on beneath the skin of a building which can be a real asset when it comes to taking care of the site for years to come.