It’s always interesting to see what people are doing with new technology. Now more than ever, we get to see how they’re applying, developing and adapting to it in innovative ways. In case you haven’t heard of them, Skycatch is an exemplar of that. Skycatch is a tech startup that’s utilizing drone technology to improve efficiency in other industries.
Using drones, apps, and data processing, they provide different levels of photogrammetry services to their clients. Photogrammetry is an important service in industries like mining and construction. It’s the process of surveying and mapping an area through photography, and for years, companies relied on small teams of human surveyors to accomplish this. Now, thanks to businesses like Skycatch, what used to take a group of people a few days now takes minutes because of drones.
Image Credit: Skycatch, Inc.
Skycatch describes itself as an “end-to-end solution for generating 2D and 3D data products from data captured using unmanned autonomous aerial vehicles (aka drones).” They streamline the photogrammetry process, which they call the Skycatch ecosystem, and can support users no matter where they are in that process. The Skycatch ecosystem has several steps. Users can use the Skycatch Flight App to plan their flight, capture their images with the Explore1 drone, process the images with their data processing pipeline, and finally analyze their “data products” with the viewer.
Explore1 is Skycatch’s high accuracy drone. It’s an RTK-based drone that, according to Skycatch, has the distinction of being “the most widely deployed RTK-based commercial drone.” RTK stands for Real Time Kinematic, which means this drone has a “GPS correction technology technique that provides real-time corrections to location data”. This translates into Explore1 giving customers high quality images with highly accurate measurements.
Image Credit: Skycatch, Inc.
Previously, their drones were operated by the Commander app. Current systems, run using the Flight1 app where users can plan ttheir missions before flying. There’s also the Edge1 base station and companion app. The base station saves time and allows users to capture RTK data while the app automatically processes that data at high speed. Their website claims, “You’ll get to preview your processed point cloud in 30 minutes, no additional rover or internet connection required.”
If you’re interested in using Skycatch’s services, they have three package options your business can subscribe to. They have a Pro Plan, an All-In-One High Precision Package, and an Enterprise Plan. Regardless of whichever plan you choose, they all come with unlimited processing. The Enterprise plan is customizable “for companies with a high volume of mission-critical imaging needs and a high degree of technical sophistication”. The duration of your contract is also flexible: “Plans are available in monthly, yearly, and multi-year options.”
I am a writer and an artist based in Georgia. Specializing in illustration, graphic design, and video art, I love to explore the new ways technology intersects with art. I think drones have done amazing things for photography and video art, making what would previously be costly and difficult more accessible. As a complete novice, it was only recently that I saw what independent artists could do with their drones, and I continue to be impressed by the sights that drones are able to explore and the images they can capture. Instagram: @tyesha.ferron