Helicopters and hydros. National Trust trailing drone filming

modern technology being used for surveying archeology, ecology. Improving understanding of sites and even down to surveying the condition of a window in a castle

modern technology being used by Vizworx for surveying archaeology, ecology. Improving understanding of sites and even down to surveying the condition of a window in a castle

Cant say it’s not boring in my line of work. Paul was playing with divers last week and next week i am playing with drones. or should i say other people are playing with drones on the National Trust’s behalf. The intention was simple.. “why not purchase a drone helicopter and film some of our projects” we were also looking at filming the more inaccessible parts of region to share with people, then we got onto archaeological and ecological surveys, oh yes what about condition assessment of the bigger buildings and we must not forget the interpretation and engagement aspects. Then it got quite complex with the civil aviation authority, flight planning, training courses and insurance. So it was a mater of think of a job and think of someone else to do it

What we have ended up with is a trial with a company to look at the value across all of the aspects listed above. The first one should be ready in a couple of weeks plus some CGi thrown in for good measure…exciting or what! (wait and see)

The drone. Resplendent with its HD camera, GPS location finder.

The drone. Resplendent with its HD camera, GPS location finder.

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6 Responses to Helicopters and hydros. National Trust trailing drone filming

  1. huwgle says:

    Good to see drones in action for this application Keith, I too have been having a look at the potential of UAV’s (for some strange reason this emerging industry isn’t too keen on the word ‘drones’!) for other conservation applications and we’ve recently done a pilot on Brownsea Island to support the project team who are evaluating the impact of storm events/ sea level rise on the sensitive coastal habitats (e.g. A freshwater lagoon) and critical infrastructure. The drone was able to fly over inaccessible areas and produced very high resolution aerial imagery and a digital height model that allows desktop 3D visualisation as well as the potential to generate height cross-sections of sea walls and hydrological analysis. The ability to generate this supplimentary height data was really quite impressive – and for some applications could be a viable alternative to LiDAR or traditional aerial photography which is much more expensive to aquire – particularly relevant for smaller sites and to quickly capture data after an event (storms and flooding spring to mind). Very interested to hear from others in the Trust using this technology from other applications – with a view to a workshop on the use of this an other remotely sensed survey techniques in the near future.

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  4. Mike Price says:

    Can anyone tell me what the situation is with members of the public using their own Drones on National Trust land? I am a member of the BMFA (British Model Flying Association) and have third-party insurance on an ‘all-risks’ basis (limit of £25,000,000.00). Taking aerial photographs of chalk Horses or some of our historic castles, from a distance of 200 metres, is a fascinating and intriguing hobby but it is almost impossible to obtain details from the National Trust as to what their rules are. I am unable to locate any information on the NT website.

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