Rapid change is occurring in the mapping industry as geoinformation becomes critically linked to innovative applications such as autonomous vehicles, unmanned aircraft, and smart cities. AI, augmented reality, and virtual reality are also impacting the way geospatial data is collected and analyzed. Many improvements in geodata collection have been enabled by increasingly sophisticated sensor technology. These new sensors are revolutionizing the mapping analysis and visualization that can be done while also making data collection more cost-effective. This is, in turn, driving innovation in business models that rely on mapping and require regularly updated and high-resolution geodata.
For these transformations to be realized, the UAVs (unmanned aerial vehicles), cars, and small satellites used to collect the data must continuously drive down costs and innovate. The recent proliferation of sensors is placing greater energy demands on vehicle and aircraft batteries. A key challenge is powering multiple sensors without compromising the design, range and cost structure of the vehicles and aircraft that carry them.
The right solar technology can meet this challenge. It can extend endurance and range by providing more power to batteries and can also power additional payload. The payload could be sensors, IR or other cameras or power-hungry equipment. This solar technology would simply be applied to the aircraft or vehicle surfaces. It should be high efficiency, lightweight, and flexible. Alta Devices Gen4 technology uniquely meets these conditions today and is designed specifically to power autonomous systems.