While the Balfour Beatty: A Digital Future for the Infrastructure Industry report talks about future uses of drone technology, many operations using drones can be carried out today e.g. improving customer service, progress monitoring, 3D modelling etc.
Those early adopters of drone technology are reaping the benefits by making data driven decisions that were not possible before.
Drones allow teams to track progress safely, more efficiently and with increased accuracy, collecting data more frequently than human surveyors.
Drones can contribute to an improved customer offering, enabling VR walk-throughs of construction projects, near real time decision-making, by collecting high resolution images for input into photogrammetry systems to produce 3D models and point clouds.
In the future, drones flying overhead will scan the site constantly, inspecting the work and using the data collected to predict and solve problems before they arise, sending instructions to robotic cranes and diggers and automated builders with no need for human involvement.
Aerial construction will also become prevalent, as drones themselves are used to undertake construction, specialising initially in hard-to-reach or unsafe places, particularly those which are high up.
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