Flying Drones in Complex Environments: Inspecting Grain Silos

Companies are looking to automate the inspection workflows of their larger infrastructure assets. For efficient and complete solutions they have to involve automated drone flights.

Grain silos inspected by Drone Inspections WA using Drone Harmony
Grain silos inspected by Drone Inspections WA using Drone Harmony

Manned inspections of industrial assets like buildings, silos, hangars, etc. are expensive, dangerous, and in most cases incomplete. Due to the asset’s complexity, it is seldom possible to achieve all required visual vantage points for a complete inspection. The introduction of drones into the inspection workflows at the industrial site has the potential to solve these problems, granted that the process can be streamlined and automated. 

A complex use case

In a recent project, Drone Inspections WA was contracted to provide a structural survey of the roofs of grain silos in Western Australia’s Wheatbelt, to determine where structural deformations have occurred. These structures have conical roofs held up by wooden beams that are prone to sag and expand as the heat and gases inside the silo expand or contract. The required output was a CAD file that would be overlaid with the structural drawings to determine if deformations had occurred.

Chris of Drone Inspection WA recognizes the value of automated flights:

“We were required to provide a resolution of a minimum of 2 cm/pixel. Only an automated flight with Drone Harmony could achieve this. The sites were challenging to set an automated flight path for, as the roofs were conical, and had many obstacles to navigate around.”

We were required to provide a resolution of a minimum of 2cm/pixel. Only an automated flight with Drone Harmony could achieve this.

Flight path in Drone Harmony 3D view

“Drone Harmony was used as it allowed for particular flight paths, of unique parameters to be designed and to have the camera manipulated independently as well by the program for the points of interest as required. Drone Harmony proved itself admirably, and we achieved in automated flight what would have taken enormous risk and complexity in manual flight.” 

Grain silos inspected by Drone Inspections WA using Drone Harmony

Drone Harmony features numerous autonomous missions suited for inspecting complex vertical structures, such as buildings, facades and towers.

Are you looking for an efficient and suitable industry inspection solution? Visit droneharmony.com or feel free to contact us at any time.

PDF of this use case.

Industries

Business intelligence derived from drone data is only as good as the data that is used to generate it.

What our customers say

Drone harmony would have to be the best equipped flight planning app I've ever used. It works perfectly for vertical and complex structures, along with a large number of mission types to achieve the best results for your target asset.

Danny Elassad, Chief Remote Pilot, Hoverscape

Drone Harmony is the best Flight Planning Platform I've used to cover the dynamic terrain of our mining business with it's Terrain Following feature.

Muhammad Ilyas, Deputy Manager Mine Planning, Sindh Engro Coal Mining Company (SECMC)

Amazing app, easy to use and powerful. Offers all the things I need for scene inspection of many kinds (towers, antennas, construction sites, private residential zones, etc...). Also good mapping grids and parameters setting.

Jose Benitez, Co-Founder, TucanoRobotics

Excellent application, it is worth going for the paid version. It works perfectly, even with simple drones like DJI Spark.

Luis Eduardo Cuevas Correa, Founder, Lekazo

Obtaining a point cloud of the entire site in a few hours using a drone is a huge benefit to the schedule and the budget.

Jesse Creech, VDC Coordinator, Brasfield & Gorrie

Drone Harmony proved itself admirably, and we achieved in automated flight what would have taken enormous risk and complexity in manual flight.

Michael Appleyard, CEO, Drone Inspection WA

Setting up our missions in Drone Harmony has been easy thanks to great tutorials and excellent support from the Drone Harmony Team. Thank you!

Dwayne Marx, Founder

With the Drone Harmony application data acquisition was consistent, the flight patterns and automation provided us with consistent high-quality models for the purposes of tower inspections.

Stanley du Toit, Solution Architect, The iGlobe Group

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