Drones: Coming to a jobsite near you!

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Soon, you may use drones to improve everything from jobsite safety to your company’s marketing efforts.

The word “drone” was co-opted from the military, who has long used the nickname to refer to their unmanned aerial vehicles. While the Federal Aviation Administration officially uses the term “unmanned aircraft system“ (UAS), as Mike Cairns, co-owner of Infinite Impact Studios told attendees at the September Construction Specifications Institute (CSI) Columbus Chapter meeting, “we call them ‘drones’ because it’s what the news calls them.”

Infinite Impact Studios is a Columbus, Ohio company that offers a multitude of products and services (video production and editing, motion graphics, animation, 3D modeling, visual effects and Web design and development), most of which incorporate drone-based media. With Cairns’ background in architecture and construction, the company works closely with the AEC industry.

It makes sense that drones would represent a good alternative to traditional aerial photography, since drones can get much closer to buildings and squeeze into places that planes could never go. But drones open up many more possibilities:

  • Drones, rather than people, can perform jobsite inspections on tall or hard to access structures, improving safety immeasurably (and also saving the cost of a crane or a lift).
  • Aerial images of a site can be used as a backdrop for BIM models of buildings or infrastructure, saving designers from spending time modeling background features.
  • 3D scanning and photogrammetry services capture as-built details.
  • Photos and live video captured via drone can be used to generate state-of-the-art marketing pieces. Consider this video of the topping out of a new medical building that Infinite Impact helped Hplex Solutions/Orthopedic One produce: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Tr9CnGkMaTs

Another bonus is that, unlike with many new forms of technology, AEC firms don’t need to invest in hardware or face a steep learning curve. Companies like Instant Impact, with their FAA certified civil aircraft systems, offer drone media as a service. So, before you know it, you too may be conducting surveys, inspections and other traditionally manned jobsite routines using drones.

Video marketing has been shown in countless studies to have a big impact on contemporary audiences. Contact AOE to see how to use video in your marketing campaigns.

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