Tom McKinnon's Posts (3)

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Luke Runyon of Harvest Public Media came to Agribotix last week to do a story on the use of drones in agriculture and the FAA issues involved.  We took him out to our favorite local farm and had a grand time flying quads.  Fortunately the story was picked up by National Public Radio so it had a US-wide distribution (link to the story).  In addition to Agribotix, Luke interviewed Eric Frew of the University of Colorado Research and Engineering Center for Unmanned Vehicles and Rory Paul of Volt Aerial Robotics.   All-in-all I think it brought some good PR to the commercial drone space at a time when we've been getting a few black eyes from irresponsible hobbyist.

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Last summer, with the help of the DIY Drones community, Agribotix set out to discover how drones could be used to help growers make better decisions. Some of you followed the journey through our blog posts, and we are grateful for all the discussion and discourse our results generated. By the end of the summer, we had the pleasure of working with dozens of growers across many states and several countries who leveraged Agribotix drones or image processing on different types of crops.

Over the course of our first full year in operation, we found that many growers are looking for a simple, cloud-based solution to process their images into actionable intelligence. We wanted the participants at DIY Drones to be one of the first to know that Agribotix has opened up our drone data processing system -- Bring Your Own Drone™ (BYOD) -- to anyone flying drones for agriculture.

The service takes images from virtually any drone, stitches them and returns a single view of a field.  If you send us near-IR pictures, we will also return the results with a false-color NDVI image as well as a shapefile that can be imported into virtually any farm management system and used as an aid to precision fertilizer application.

If you are using a 3D Robotics flight controller, you can download our Field Extractor software, which will automate the process of selecting the images for each flight, geotagging them and uploading. 

We have tried to make the process as risk-free as possible; we process your results, return a thumbnail, and you only pay if you like what you see. You can sign up and begin processing immediately.  Use the Discount Code DIYFREEFIELD and your first field will be processed at no cost.

If you are flying drones for agriculture, we hope you will give our service a try and let us know what you think.

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The Agribotix team is in New Zealand, flying our UAVs over Tasman Glacier to help researchers at Victoria University of Wellington make a digital elevation model of the glacier. Today, we flew the twin boom Sky Hunter over 100km in transects across the glacier. We've mounted a downward facing camera in the fuselage, which takes photos every 3 seconds. Using these photos, and programs such as Agisoft Photoscan Pro, we can construct an accurate 3D model of the glacial surface, useful for a variety of research applications, including estimates of glacier velocity and the change in glacier volume over time.

Read more about our flights today, and check out our progress at: Glacier Flights

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