My degree project is a drone concept, connected to an external interface that gives building planners the information they need when planning new constructions, in a safe and efficient way. The information concerns road distances and angles, terrain conditions and locating underground objects. The advantage of collecting this information faster, is lower costs for the execution and giving possibility to start constructions earlier. The advantage of using a drone is to keep road workers away from unsafe traffic.
Inspiration and Method
The inspiration actually came from an incident at my last summer job. All of a sudden the office was out off water for two days, which caused more irritation than expected. We found out that an excavator accidentally had cut a water pipe just outside the office. But the project's focus area became much wider than that as I dug deeper into the research.
During the project I have been talking to several excavator operators, two construction engineers and an application manager within radar systems. These people have being a big resource, because they explained the whole process of planning, excavating, their opinions on today's equipment and how radar systems work. I also researched a lot about different techniques such as upcoming drones, robots, GPS-systems, radar-systems, engine alternatives etc. This gave me the knowledge I needed to understand the different potentials in my concepts and evaluate them with more substance.
Roughly explained, you mark GPS-cooridnates on the interface where you want the drone to measure and scan the ground. The drone flies from its loading station to the selected area and starts to work. It works totally alone, because if vehicles or people are coming too close, it maneuvers away from the vehicle/person and immediately starts to work again. When the drone has executed its job, it sends the information to the interface that gives building planners and excavator operators the information they need.
The drone is equipped with several technical devices for having the ability to measure the distances and angles of the area. The drone can also check terrain conditions, and detect pipes and cables under the ground.