Drones within Building Design, Construction and Maintenance
Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAVs), commonly known as drones, have multiple pragmatic uses. They have commercial applications and can be used for disaster management, aerial photography, product delivery and agriculture as well.
Access and Approval
Practical considerations need to be made when drones are to be used for a particular purpose. Although a license to operate and fly a drone is not always obligatory, there are certain rules and regulations that must be adhered to.
If your aim is to operate a drone commercially, you must acquire a commercial certificate for the drone. This serves mainly as an insurance policy. All federal and state laws must be followed, which pertain to recording capabilities, minimum safe distance from other properties and obtaining a remote pilot certificate as well.
In general, the commercial operation of drones have grown exponentially in recent years, which is why the authorities have doubled down on the protocols and standards regarding these vehicles.
Drone Applications in Construction
We will look into some of the pragmatic ways in which drones can be used at different stages of construction.
Drones may be used by construction workers to execute building surveys. For instance, if they want full visibility of the roof and are unable to gain access through other means, they may use drones, which would allow them to gauge its condition and ascertain if any modifications are required.
Moreover, as opposed to using scaffolding, ladder or any other heavy duty equipment that would require considerable man power, a drone may be controlled by a single person to inspect parts of the property that may be difficult to reach. This also minimizes health and safety risks in the process.
Carrying out inspections on construction sites is significantly simpler with the presence of drones. It is more convenient than ever to initiate a visual inspection of areas that fall in the high risk category. Like we had earlier alluded, it mitigates the risks attached to the performance of such tasks. Drone footage may be recorded in high definition, providing crystal clear images for inspection.
Additionally, inspections may also be carried out for maintenance purposes. Skyscrapers, high rise towers and bridges may be difficult to inspect and generally require technical personnel and purpose-built equipment. Drones can accomplish this task without the need for much else.
Furthermore, during different phases of construction, reports are prepared to determine progress and observe if the project is moving forward seamlessly. Typically, such documents include notes that are based on the evaluation done by the contract administrator.
Drones may make their job much easier, since a routine drone flight can record and visualize project progress. This would entail aerial shots of the building as well as high definition videos. The media collected may be sent to stakeholders to provide them with cogent insight of the project.
The nature of construction sites is such that they are constantly evolving. Extensive planning is required which may be altered as the project reaches fruition. Drones are extremely useful in this regard, since they can provide updates for progress reports and help identify issues that may be hard to locate.
To learn more about the laws, usage and how to register drones visit the U.S. Federal Aviation Authority (FAA) HERE