Managing enterprise-wide drone programs is challenging – not only because of the reliance on skilled pilots & siloed operations but also because of the variety of stakeholders involved, across geographies and missions. Automating & scaling such commercial UAV operations requires unified, customized dashboards, real-time information sharing, sophisticated mission planning and remote access to payloads and data feeds.
The key to automating and scaling drone operations for such applications is the ability to remotely plan, control, view, execute, monitor, log and share drone missions. This, in turn, requires connectivity and control over 4G/LTE/5G, live HD video feeds, fleet management, survey planning, remote gimbal control, pre-flight checklists, geofencing, airspace compliance, image & video archives, and advanced waypoint and point-of-interest capabilities. This was made available to customers by FlytBase earlier this year – in the form of FlytGCS, a cloud-based remote operations solution for drone operators and service providers.
As the commercial drone market matures, professional drone operations are maturing to enterprise ones – with corporations across the world building in-house drone fleets and programs, runnings PoCs and pilots for multiple use-cases, and investing in – and even acquiring – drone technology vendors. Taking cognizance of this market evolution from the ‘early adopters’ to the ‘early majority’, FlytBase has now launched FlytGCS Enterprise.
FlytGCS Enterprise is designed to factor in the needs of a variety of stakeholders such as remotely located subject-matter experts, safety managers, technology partners, drone service providers, senior management, and regulatory agencies. The productivity, cost-effectiveness, and speed of drone missions in perimeter security, asset monitoring, utility inspections, emergency response, property surveillance, etc. can thus be significantly boosted – via the conversion of real-time information into well-informed decisions.
Access to telemetry, gimbal and video data can be customized and controlled via the FlytGCS Enterprise edition, so as to strike the right balance between broad stakeholder participation on one hand, and privacy and security on the other hand. Long duration missions are enabled by automated charging using precision landing on charging pads and docking stations – further helping scale the adoption of autonomous drones.
Given that FlytGCS Enterprise is hardware agnostic, enterprises can build a mixed fleet of custom (PX4 or Ardupilot based) drones as well as off-the-shelf prosumer-grade drones (eg. DJI Mavic, Phantom, Matrice). Drone program managers can thus easily migrate their fleets to newer, SDK-enabled drone platforms that get introduced to the market over time. Finally, FlytGCS Enterprise offers the ability to localize the dashboard for languages, customize the user interface, and use APIs to integrate with existing business management systems.
Nitin Gupta, FlytBase CEO, commented, “It’s important not to mix BVLOS operations with large-scale enterprise adoption. While BVLOS waivers and approvals are certainly crucial for commercial use-cases such as inspections of oil & gas pipelines or utility transmission lines, there are many applications that can be rapidly scaled with only VLOS/EVLOS compliance. These include drone-based surveillance and inspection of high-value assets (eg. wind turbines, refinery equipment, construction projects), large agricultural farms, industrial premises, public safety & emergency response, and many more. With the availability of FlytGCS Enterprise edition, the live remote drone operations capability of FlytGCS can now be customized for specific use-cases, sectors, and drone fleets.”