Welcome to an interview with the Panton Data Science Team, who are working in drone-based projects where they are pushing the envelope with respect to applications and accuracy, thanks to a unique approach to data collection and analytics.
What is your name and your relationship to drones and drone surveys?
Panton data science team, Yang Liu, Bo Chen, and Sunnie Wu.
Relationship: develop algorithm/models to utilize drone survey/image for data analytics, develop user interface on platform to simply workflow.
How did you get involved in working with drones? What are some of the benefits and potential breakthroughs?
We get involved with different industries, such as insurance claim processing, pipeline survey, heavy infrastructure inspection, oil/gas leak detection, precision agriculture, etc.
Benefit: (1) significant efficiency increase (2) mitigation of safety concern for adjusters (3) decrease of labor engagement (4) big data collection for future prediction (5) reduce cost (6) center place for data and data analytics.
Potential Breakthroughs: (1) streamline traditional industry workflow (2) enable the possibility of more frequent inspection survey (3) replace partial labor intensive work using machines.
What are some of the projects you've been involved with?
- oil/gas leak detection, pipeline survey: use drone equipped with sensors to find potential leaking portion on gas pipeline
- insurance claim/underwriting: equip insurance adjusters with drone would guarantee adjusters' safety; automatic measurement report, Xactimate macro would dramatically increase the productivity
- real-estate photography: provide high quality image and video to house seller to help them close the listing faster
- roofing company: equip roofers with drones would minimize their staying time on roof top; automatic measurement report would reduce their cost and decrease the risk of dealing with inaccurate estimate from insurance company
- wind turbine inspection: automatic detection of damages on turbines and automatic inspection report would reduce the time for each inspection, and potentially increase the frequency of inspection
- precision agriculture: using hyperspectral images could help identify carbon contents in the soil, so to control the nutrition status of crops
What is the role of analytics in drone-derived data? What are some of the new approaches?
Role: extract the pattern/model/physical essence from huge volume of image data. The extracted model will be used for future prediction.
New approaches: computer vision, 3D modeling, deep learning, artificial intelligence, predictive analytics, etc.
What are some of the new directions that you believe hold real promise?
In general, all industries with huge volume of data (including transaction/production/exploration/appraisal/experiment/medical imaging...) will be potential candidates for the use of big data analytics.
We already started experiencing the open market in insurance industry to accept drone images as claim evidence. And drone images also provide much more accurate measurement through 3D model reconstruction.
We also saw the drone images application in heavy infrastructure inspection, such as wind turbine, cell towers, etc.
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