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SENSYN ROBOTICS, Inc. (Head Office: Shibuya-ku, Tokyo / President: Takuya Kitamura; hereinafter “SENSYN ROBOTICS”), a company which is aiming to fully automate operations with drones focused on the areas of facility inspections, disaster countermeasures and security, has conducted a demonstration experiment of fully automated land ecosystem surveys using drones in vegetation surveys conducted by the Japan Agency for Marine-Earth Science and Technology (hereinafter "JAMSTEC").
It was confirmed that the new observation system is effective for fixed-point observation in places where human access is difficult, which will lead to the possibility of future research activities.
Contents of the experiment
We conducted a fully automated vegetation survey over the Natsujima Shell Mound, a National Important Cultural Property, using the SENSYN DRONE HUB for the purpose of identifying tree species by focusing on the plant season through drone observation.
In the demonstration experiment, the following verifications were conducted to acquire image data for use in vegetation surveys.
- The drone automatically flies over the set route and takes images from directly above the object to check if the image data can be acquired.
- Execute the scheduling registration on the SENSYN FLIGHT CORE and check whether it is possible to acquire image data by fully automatic navigation at the set time.
Route setting screen
Automatically calculate the navigation route
At the appointed time, the drone will automatically take off from the platform and fly exactly the route specified in advance on the system, followed by a fully automatic and precise automatic landing.
In this verification experiment, the flight was verified within visual range of the operator, and it was confirmed that all missions from take-off to landing could be carried out without the intervention of workers, confirming that the drone has the necessary functions for unmanned operation.
We plan to continue measuring and testing the effectiveness of the system in order to achieve fully automated operation in the future.
This demonstration experiment was conducted with the permission of the Yokosuka City Board of Education (Agency for Cultural Affairs). Since this site is located in an area where unauthorized drone flights are prohibited, we flew with permission from the Ministry of Land, Infrastructure, Transport and Tourism.
Orthomosaic image of the Natsujima shell mound, taken with 80% overlap and synthesized using Agisoft's PhotoScan (courtesy of JAMSTEC Principal Investigator Makoto Nagai). The trees growing in the Natsujima Shell Mound can be seen in each individual.
What customers expect from the SENSYN DRONE HUB
Conventional drone observations have been difficult to set up the high frequency flights required to systematically understand natural phenomena. We believe that the SENSYN DRONE HUB is very useful to solve this problem and is one of the attractions of using the SENSYN DRONE HUB in natural science research. We strongly hope that the development of a safe and flexible system for further practical use will continue through repeated demonstration tests and technological developments in both software and hardware.
JAMSTEC: Takuma Miyagawa and Nobuhiro Nagai
SENSYN ROBOTICS is promoting the complete automation of drone operations as a way to solve the problems of "lack of human resources to operate drones and check the images taken" and "man-hours to train and secure drones" when they are used for actual operations in various fields such as equipment inspection, disaster response, security and monitoring.
Outline of the demonstration experiment
- Date and time: 24 and 25 December 2019
- Location: Japan Agency for Marine-Earth Science and Technology (JAMSTEC) Headquarters, Yokosuka, next to the Natsujima Shell Mound (Natsujima Town 20-1) and over the area designated by the person in charge of JAMSTEC at the Natsujima Shell Mound
- The drone automatically flies over a set route and takes images from directly above the object to confirm the validity of the image data for vegetation surveys.
- Confirm the validity of the vegetation survey by fully automatic navigation at the set time by registering the scheduling on the SENSYN FLIGHT CORE.
The Japan Agency for Marine-Earth Science and Technology (JAMSTEC), based on the principles of peace and welfare, aims to improve the level of marine science and technology and contribute to the development of academic research by comprehensively carrying out basic research and development on the ocean and cooperation in academic research on the ocean.
About SENSYN DRONE HUB
SENSYN DRONE HUB is a system that promotes the automation of operations. It has integrated control software and operation applications in addition to bases (drone ports) to support drones, automatic takeoff and landing, and automatic charging.
About SENSYN ROBOTICS
Our mission is to evolve what is considered “commonplace” in society with the power of robotics. It is under this mission that we have continued to take on pressing challenges in regards to specific social issues in various fields focused on facility inspections, disaster response, and security and surveillance by achieving the full automation of work with the power of robotics since our establishment in October 2015.
*FLIGHT CORE and DRONE HUB are a registered trademark of SENYSN ROBOTICS, Inc. The company, product and service names given in this document are the registered trademarks or trademarks of those companies.