H3 Dynamics has unveiled DRONEBOX, a unique system that converges professional drone-enabled service activities with the Industrial Internet of Things. This new smart drone nesting solution, automates professional UAV operations through event-triggered, scheduled or on-demand deployment and grid-independent battery charging.
DRONEBOX is an all-inclusive, self-powered system that can be deployed anywhere, including in remote areas where industrial assets, borders, or sensitive installations require constant monitoring. Designed as an evolution over today’s many unattended sensors and CCTV cameras installed in cities, borders, or large industrial estates, DRONEBOX innovates by giving sensors freedom of movement using drones as their vehicles. End-users can now deploy flying sensor systems at different locations, and measure just about anything, anywhere, anytime. They offer 24/7 reactivity, providing critical information to operators – even to those located thousands of miles away.
Besides innovating in the world of unattended sensors, DRONEBOX eases the scalability challenges for drone service operators. Such service providers use professional drones to provide their customers with detailed aerial land surveys in mining or agriculture, perform infrastructure inspections, or monitor the progress of construction sites. However, some remote locations need regular or prolonged visits, which increase travel costs and risks to drone service providers. From an end-user perspective, despite providing powerful new insights within an industrial context, the mass-adoption of professional UAVs is slowed by the special skills required to operate them. Conversely, by pre-deploying DRONEBOX systems at the right locations, travel to remote areas is no longer required, charging or handling drone batteries is eliminated, and sensor data is simply sent through a network for easy access and processing.
DRONEBOXES can be installed anywhere so that drones can perform pre-programmed scheduled routines, deploy on demand, or be woken up by other drones or sensors as part of a much wider network of “things”. As a network, DRONEBOXES can increase their effectiveness and mission times using collaborative technologies. Such deployments could offer first responder support in crisis events before sending humans into dangerous environments, such as nuclear power plant meltdowns, chemical spills, or natural disasters.
DRONEBOX can charge drone batteries automatically within its shelter system. Off-grid power is provided primarily by a solar-battery installation. For more advanced requirements, system capabilities can be extended using REMOBOX, an accessory that provides more advanced communications and hosts a small back-up fuel cell system for year long availability in mission critical locations.
The use of mobile sensors hosted in networked DRONEBOXES could revolutionize precision agriculture, border and perimeter security, wildlife protection, critical infrastructure maintenance, telecom tower and wind turbine maintenance, oil & gas asset inspection, building and facilities management, and a range of other applications.