This week my network has been dominated by the MinExpo conference that is currently just winding up in Las Vegas. In what is a seeming return to “business as usual” the massive global (face to face) mining conference has seen lots of new releases within the underground space. More to follow on this next week…
A huge announcement this week came from the Swiss survey supply giants Leica Geosystems, who announced their own autonomous LiDAR based drone solution. Could this be a rival and fully integrated solution to take on the established Hovermap, Exyn and Inkonova solutions that are already mapping underground mines across the globe?
“BLK2FLY offers advanced obstacle avoidance while allowing users to plan entirely autonomous missions, from autonomous flight paths and scanning to intelligent return to home for battery changes to continue its mission.”RAJ PRASHAD – HxGN Corporate Marketing Specialist
The key takeaway would be the fully integrated play, which would see a purpose built, in house drone used with the Leica BLK sensor – reducing the requirement to source servicing and parts from separate suppliers to maintain your LiDAR drone. The body of the drone also includes cameras and radar sensors, that will allow for easy point cloud colourisation and also improved collision avoidance.
The movement toward miniaturising LiDAR capable drones will be front of mind for drone manufacturers, as they look to capitalise on the growing appetite within the underground space. It will be fascinating to see how these solutions will develop in the next couple of years.
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