Kevin Ramberg, Principal Ecologist with aci consulting, recently presented at the American Council of Engineering Companies (ACEC) National Conference in Orlando, Florida about the integration of Unmanned Aircraft Systems (UAS), also known as drones, into environmental compliance and monitoring.
The number of FAA-registered drone operators is quickly approaching 800,000. In recent years, scientists, surveyors, engineers, and contractors have created innovative approaches and solutions with this relatively new technology.
A/E/C applications for drone use include topography, site reconnaissance, quantity estimates, inspections, and high resolution up-to-the-minute aerial photography.
Drones have proven to be useful when regulatory authorities or multiple stakeholders need to have input on various aspects of the project. Mitigation site selection can be identified, and plant health can be assessed remotely. Vantage points that are unreachable on foot can be easily viewed using this technology. For high profile projects, compliance commitments can be demonstrated through high resolution aerial photo documentation.
Other tools in the toolbox include: 3-D visualizations, habitat modeling and monitoring, rapid preliminary reconnaissance, and preconstruction condition assessment. Virtual site visits save project time and cost.
aci consulting recently used this technology to conduct a virtual site visit in central Texas and to perform a migratory bird nest survey to avoid potential impacts to Colorado raptors.
With Part 107 certified UAS pilots on staff, aci consulting is ready to support our clients’ needs with this cutting edge technology. Do you have a project that could benefit from using drone technology? Let us help!