Roof Inspections with a Drone

You don't need to climb up on that roof... use a drone!

We were recently hired to fly our mapping drone over the Grand Summit Hotel in Park City, Utah. The hotel is quite large and is ringed with heated cable (heat trace cable) to keep large chunks of ice from falling off and possibly injuring someone. The hotel needed to replace their roof ice melt system with a new and more energy efficient system. For reasons I won't get into, they needed to know how many feet of existing cable was up there.

Besides using a drone, the other two options were to put a person in a boom lift maneuvering along the edge of the hotel or actually have someone crawl out on the roof! Both of these methods are time consuming, more costly, and put peoples live's in danger. So the obvious choice was to use a drone.

In about an hour we were able to safely fly the drone over and around the hotel getting hi-res images which were then passed onto the engineers where they were able to easily get the measurements from the safety of their desks. We ran two missions. The first mission was an autonomous flight where we took many "top-down" hi-res photos and later stitched them together to get one very hi-res image (see image top-left) of the entire roof. Our second mission, we manually flew the drone around the entire edge of the hotel taking closeup photos of the roof line. As mentioned, we accomplished this safely in about an hour!

In this case scenario we saved our client time, money, and they never had to put anyone in harms way. Using drones, or UAVs, for roof inspections just works. 

Did you know you can also use a drone equipped with a thermal imaging camera (FLIR) to inspect roofs for heat loss and penetrating water? Contact us for a demo...

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