What You Missed From AirWorks 2019
Now that DJI’s annual AirWorks conference has come to a close, it’s a good time to take a look back at some of the major headlines. The event always provides an avalanche of product releases and partnership announcements, and this year was no different.
DJI Dominates the Headlines
As you’d expect from the company’s own conference, DJI stole the show with a number of significant announcements.
The P4 Multispectral & Agras T16
The first major news was the launch of a new drone for the agriculture market, the P4 Multispectral.
The P4 Multispectral combines DJI’s iconic Phantom 4 airframe with data from six separate sources: an RGB camera and a multispectral camera array with five narrowband sensors. The array includes red edge and near-infrared. It can capture visible and invisible light to provide insights into crop health, soil composition, water salinity and more.
A Markets and Markets report in May predicted that the global agriculture drone market will grow from $1.2 billion this year to 4.8 billion by 2024. DJI is hoping to tap into that potential with hardware that will help farmers improve crop yields, cut costs, and make the most of their land.
According to DJI’s Director of Strategic Partnerships, Jan Gasparic, the “P4 Multispectral has the promise to transform the agriculture and land management industries by collecting precise plant-level data without having to send personnel into the field for manual surveys.”
The company also announced plans to launch the Agras T16 drone internationally. The heavy-duty model sprays fertilizers and pesticides with precision onto crops in fields and orchards.
The DJI Disaster Relief Program
In the always welcome category of ‘Drones for Good’ news, DJI unveiled a new initiative to support first responders in the United States. The manufacturer’s new Disaster Relief Program will equip state and local public safety agencies with the latest drone hardware and software.
The aim is to ensure emergency teams have everything they need to use drones as part of response and recovery efforts in the wake of major disasters, from wildfires and hurricanes to floods and earthquakes.
The program will see DJI work closely with government agencies and strategic partners, including:
- Los Angeles Fire Department, One of the largest fire departments using drone technology for fire prevention and emergency response
- Menlo Park Fire Protection District, a long-term development partner of DJI
- Alameda County Sheriff’s Office, a law enforcement agency with extensive disaster response experience
- Public Safety Unmanned Response Team North Texas, which has drone pilots from several fire, police and emergency management agencies
- DJI Enterprise partner and UAS service provider FLYMOTION
- Axon, a DJI strategic partner that equips law enforcement agencies with drone technology and secure data solutions
As part of the program, DJI’s latest technology - including the Mavic 2 Enterprise Series and Matrice 200 Series - will be available alongside technical support, repairs, on-site staff and access to FlightHub and AeroScope.
FLIR Launches Sensor for Detecting Chemical Hazards
Thermal imaging specialist FLIR has a long history of collaboration with DJI. And that continued with the announcement of another product, the FLIR MUVE C360, at AirWorks 2019.
The MUVE C360 is effectively the drone industry’s first gas detector. The sensor is compatible with the DJI Matrice 210 and offers first responders a quick and safe way to carry out hazard assessments.
The C360 houses a photoionization detector and an array of electrochemical sensors. Combined they offer first responders a way to continuously monitor chemical hazards in a disaster scenario.
DroneBase and Hangar Announce Software Partnership
Finally, big news for enterprises using drones in the Architecture, Engineering & Construction (AEC) industries.
We’ve partnered with aerial insight platform Hangar to become the service provider for all of the company’s JobSight users in the United States.
The JobSight tool provides multi-site visibility and insights for AEC enterprises, allowing managers to documents project progress, manage teams and more.
The result of the new partnership is an end-to-end solution for AEC customers. We're providing drone-enabled insights across projects, while the our pilot network simplifies the process of scaling drone use across operations.