Tag Archives: Airobotics

Airobotics Trion payload to improve drone inspection and security capabilities

Automated drone startup, Airobotics, has unveiled a highly “drone-stabilised” payload for inspection and security applications at ADS’ 2019 Warrior Expo East, in Virginia, USA.

Named Trion, this payload marks Airobotics’ first in-house developed and manufactured sensor for the market – available both with and independent of – its leading automated drone hardware and data insights platform, the company said.

Airobotics’ Trion weighs less than 1.2 kg and has small dimensions, according to Airobotics. This is on top of being a “high-definition, electro-optical and infrared gyro-stabilised payload.”

The company said: “Trion pushes the limits on existing and competing capabilities of stabilised payloads available today. Designed for superior performance, Trion carries a unique set of advanced capabilities for object identification, real-time tracking and comprehensive data harvesting.”

In addition to this, Airobotics has signed an agreement with ADS, a leading operational equipment and logistics provider serving US Military, Federal agencies, international and coalition partners, and defence industry partners.

The Trion payload provides day-and-night observation, surveillance, and targeting capabilities at long ranges and in adverse conditions, according to Airobotics. Integrated with Airobotics data insights platform, additional features include tag and tracking of security incidents, allowing for real-time insights to fuel informed decision making. Additionally, Trion offers a high-resolution HD day camera with powerful continuous optical zoom and continuous 360° panoramic capabilities.

Airobotics said: “Designed for maximum versatility, Trion can be seamlessly integrated into Airobotics’ automated drone platform, or other UAS, vehicles, platforms and ground applications, enabling increased flexibility for data collection, detection and analysis to obtain valuable insights.”

Ryan Angold, ADS’ Vice President of Markets, said: “We believe that our partnership with Airobotics will greatly enhance the customer experience and provide a market-leading solution for critical security and inspection applications.”

Ran Krauss, CEO and Co-Founder at Airobotics, said: “We are pleased to offer Airobotics’ powerful and highly stabilised Trion payload to the broader market that will grant professionals with the ability to capture more accurate data for fast decision-making in the most demanding circumstances.”

Airobotics has achieved a number of milestones across the business, including integration of LiDAR into its Automated Drone Platform, obtaining CASA approval for Beyond Visual Line of Sight (BVLOS) Drone Flights from remote operations centres in Australia and making advancements of aviation regulation with a US FAA BVLOS waiver.

Airobotics boosts autonomous drone offering with new LiDAR capabilities

Airobotics has introduced LiDAR capabilities to its lineup of automated drone solutions, significantly reducing the time it takes for aerial data to be collected.

The announcement came at the same time as it declared record growth in 2018 and an expansion of its executive team in its new Scottsdale, Arizona headquarters.

Until a few years ago, the use of LiDAR was not possible with an aircraft as the sensors were hefty and required manual data processing, according to Airobotics. “Today, LiDAR images are captured and processed quickly in the cloud, allowing Airobotics’ customers to make effective decisions based on high-frequency, consistent data capture,” the company said.

These new capabilities will provide rapid precision scans across the value chain for industries such as mining and construction, according to Airobotics. Applications typically involve tailing dams monitoring, infrastructure inspections, haul road safety compliance, stockpile volume analytics, tracking rehabilitation progress, and more.

“The use of LiDAR significantly reduces the time it takes for aerial data to be collected, even at night or in low light, and allows for rapid turnaround time on data processing,” the company said. “Airobotics’ drones can work with various payloads. In addition to LiDAR, spatial data can also be captured using photogrammetry, video, and infra-red (thermal).”

In addition to this news, Airobotics said it had appointed former Morgan Stanley employee William Atkins as Chief Financial Officer and former Airware Chief Revenue Officer  as its own CRO.

Last week, the company received Australia aviation approval to operate automated multi-rotor drones from its remote operations centre beyond visual line of sight with no aircrew needed at the client site.

Airobotics automated drones permitted to go beyond line of sight in Australia

Airobotics has made Australia aviation history by obtaining the nation’s first and only Civil Aviation Safety Authority approval to operate automated multi-rotor drones from its remote operations centre (ROC) beyond visual line of sight (BVLOS) with no aircrew needed at the client site, the startup reports.

Alternatively, remote pilots can be located within Airobotics Australia’s ROC, at a designated remote pilot station, operating more than 1,000 km away from onsite systems at the customer sites. This new “man on the loop” level of operations enables human operators to supervise flights, but without requiring “man in the loop” pilots to intervene in flight operations, according to Airobotics.

Niv Russo, Airobotics’ Vice President of Aviation and Compliance, said the approval was a major achievement for the company and its future growth across Australia. “Removing aircrews from potentially dangerous environments, like mines, enables customers to extract maximum value and reduce risk from their business operations by leveraging technology and automation. This progression marks the next step for Airobotics as we continue to break new ground in unmanned drone technology to deliver safer and more accurate, data-driven solutions.”

Joe Urli, Airobotics’ Director of Flight Operations and Chief Remote Pilot, said the ROC approval set a new benchmark for unmanned drone operations for the Asia-Pacific region. “Airobotics’ unmanned drone platform significantly benefits our clients, providing them with operations that increase efficiency whilst saving operational costs and empowering flight crews to operate in secure locations hundreds of miles away from hazardous sites.”

Airobotics says its automated solution represents the next generation of drone operations, overtaking standard piloted services which can be prohibitive, imprecise and not always available.

The company claims to be the first and only drone solution worldwide permitted to fly without a human operator, having now added Australia approval to the certifications it had already received in Israel and the US.

Airobotics achieves new first with automated drones in the US

Airobotics has received a Certificate of Waiver (CoW) from the US Federal Aviation Administration that will allow it to operate from the company’s remote operations centre in Scottsdale, Arizona.

It has become the first company in the US to receive a CoW that combines three elements – flying beyond visual line of sight (BVLOS) for automated drone operations, over human beings, with a visual observer that is not required to keep a visual line of sight on the drone.

The company said this CoW for BVLOS will primarily be used within the mining sector as well as other industrial facilities in the US.

Ran Krauss, CEO and Co-Founder of Airobotics, said: “We recently opened our US headquarters in Arizona and this latest certification opens the gateways to offering American mining companies, seaports, major construction projects and, in the future, smart cities, an optimal means of increasing efficiency and safety while decreasing operational costs.”

He added: “As our unique pilotless drone technology and industrial grade platform continues breaking new ground, we are able to provide customers with a more accurate and frequent data-driven solution that is the only one of its class in the industry.”

The company recently announced a $30 million Series D round of funding bringing its total investment to $101 million. This new round of funding is to be used to further scale operations in the US after recently establishing its headquarters in Scottsdale, where Airobotics will run all North America, South America and Central America operations.

Airobotics says its automated solution represents the next generation of drone operations, overtaking standard piloted services which are expensive, inaccurate and not always available. The company is the first and only drone solution worldwide certified to fly without a human operator.

“The latest award positions Airobotics as the only drone company certified to fly BVLOS in the US, Australia and Israel, three countries considered to be in the cutting edge of UAV regulations,” the company said.

Airobotics raises more funds as it looks for further autonomous drone growth

One month on from launching its North American headquarters in Scottsdale, Arizona, automated drone startup Airobotics has announced a $30 million fundraising plan.

The M Series D round of funding, led by Pavilion Capital, will bring its total capital raised to $101 million.

The new round of funding will be used to further scale Airobotics operations in the US and Australia, plus to continue servicing the mining industry and other industrial facilities globally, Airobotics said.

Ran Krauss, CEO and Co-Founder of Airobotics, said: “We have a strong business pipeline and, to keep up with demand for our technology, we are continuing to expand operations across the countries in which we operate, specifically our new headquarters in the US.

“Additionally, the new funding will drive our continuous work with Aviation Authorities to obtain BVLOS (Beyond Visual Line of Sight) Certificate of Waiver in every geography we operate in, including in the US.”

Airobotics is the first and only drone solution worldwide certified to fly without a human operator.

Airobotics Optimus drone keeping an eye on BHP’s closed San Manuel copper mine

Airobotics revealed last week it had signed up BHP as its first customer in North America following the launch of its new Scottsdale, Arizona headquarters. Efrat Fenigson, VP of Marketing of Airobotics, provided IM with some insight into how the world’s biggest miner by market capitalisation is using the company’s autonomous Optimus drone.

IM: On what operation is BHP using one of Airobotics’ automated drones?

EF: Airobotics’ automated drones are currently deployed by BHP in Arizona, San Manuel in a closed mine site.

Airobotics has one brand of drone – Optimus. Optimus doesn’t work as a standalone drone, it is part of a solution created entirely in-house. Airobotics automated drone solution is comprised of four major components:

  • Optimus – an autonomous, large, high capacity drone;
  • Airbase – a completely automated base station which houses the Optimus drone, and a robotic arm that handles the swapping of batteries and payloads;
  • Airobotics software – integrated, dynamic software that enables users to control and manage missions with one click and analyse data in a user-friendly dashboard;
  • Data insights – highly accurate and repeatable missions deliver actionable business insights to customers, using LiDAR, photogrammetry, video and thermal imaging.

IM: For what purpose is BHP using Airobotics drones?

EF: BHP is using the Airobotics solution to achieve real-time aerial insight, aimed at reducing risk and improving efficiency, performing inspections and delivering orthophotos and 3D models.

IM: Why was an automated drone preferred over other drone options?

EF: Standard piloted drone services are expensive, inaccurate and not always available. Our drone platform is fully automated from end-to-end, and we are the first commercial drone in the world to be certified to fly without a human operator in Israel, and currently in the process in the US.

Our unique capabilities include:

  • Multiple payloads and battery swapping – Airobotics’ system has the unique capability of swapping its own batteries and payloads, using a robotic arm. This allows for a diversity of payloads and mission types;
  • Fully automated platform – Airobotics’ platform is able to automatically self-launch, fly as well as land, time after time, accurately. By taking the drone pilot and operator out of the equation, Airobotics enables safety assurances for enterprises;
  • Industrial grade, durable and weather resistant platform – The Airbase is completely sealed, waterproof, durable, and corrosion resistant. More than that, the Airbase is made from a rugged, industrial grade exterior. Optimus drones can fly in rain and wind of up to 20 knots with gusts of 30 knots.
  • Coverage and speed – Airobotics drones can cover up to a 5 km radius around the Airbase, at a speed of 10 m/s for up to 40 minutes.

BHP’s in-situ copper leaching operations at San Manuel, Arizona, was shut down in 2001. It ceased underground mining at San Manuel in August 1999 due to a sustained period of low copper prices, but was producing some 100,000 t/y of copper prior to this.

Automated drone specialist Airobotics sets up US launchpad

Israel automated drone startup Airobotics has launched its North American headquarters in Scottsdale, Arizona, where it will run all North America, South America and Central America operations.

The Scottsdale office is intended to become the company’s global headquarters as Airobotics continues to scale up, with the world’s largest mining company, BHP, the company’s first customer in the US.

Airobotics says it has created the only data-driven, fully automated drone solution enabling a new dimension of data collection and insights.

Ran Krauss, CEO and Co-Founder of Airobotics, said Arizona was the obvious choice for its new global headquarters.

“When deciding where to launch our first US office, Arizona was the top choice for us as it has a strong mining industry, great weather conditions for drone testing, and potential partners we’re excited to work with. The state and local governments are very supportive of autonomous and aviation technologies and the UAV industry specifically, aligning with our plans to operate UAVs beyond visual line of sight (BVLOS) in the US.”

The opening ceremony attendees were invited to tour the facility and observe a demonstration of Airobotics’ automated drone system. The company plans to grow the Scottsdale team to 80 employees by the end of 2019, focusing on recruiting local technology, operations and sales personnel.

Airobotics says its automated solution represents the next generation of drone operations, overtaking standard piloted services. It was the first company worldwide to be granted authorisation to fly fully automated pilotless drones, certified by the Civil Aviation Authority of Israel.

The company is headquartered in Israel and has offices in Australia, as well as additional operations in Chile and New Caledonia. It has raised $71 million in funding to date and grown from 80 to 200 employees in its first year.