Drone solutions have an integration problem. “Over the past year,” Microdrones president Vivien Heriard-Debreuil said, “we saw laser sensors, airframes, and software released, but the end user was expected to perform the integration. Is that helpful?”
Microdrones doesn’t think so, and that’s why the company is present at this year’s ILMF to showcase its mdLiDAR100, an easy-to-use drone lidar solution that comes fully integrated with everything you need to start capturing aerial lidar data. That means everything: it comes complete with a drone, a fully integrated lidar payload, the software for processing data, and all the support and training necessary to help a user through the whole process. Microdrones says that is optimized for end-to-end workflows in land surveying, construction, oil & gas, and mining applications.
The mdLiDAR1000 weighs in at 6 kg and promises operation for 25 minutes, or up to 10 km of total flight distance under standard flight conditions. It includes includes a lightweight, downward-oriented lidar sensor with an 85° FOV, and a survey-grade Applanix APX-15 UAV single board module that houses both a GNSS satellite receiver for localization, and an IMU for pose estimation.
Together, this hardware can hit an accuracy of 6 cm when flown at 40 meters height and at a speed of 3 meters per second.
A software suite for end-to-end workflows
To gather data with the system, the user starts with the mdCockpit Tablet software, which allows them to set the survey area with swipe gestures, as well as select desired point density, or flying height and drone speed. From there, the software will automate the survey flight, as well as allow the user to monitor the data collection using any Android tablet.