DJI, Skycatch Making 1,000 Custom Drones for Construction Company


DJI has extended its partnership with San Francisco-based Skycatch to manufacture and deliver a fleet of 1,000 high-precision drones for Komatsu construction sites worldwide.

This represents the largest commercial drone order in history, DJI and Skycatch claim. Each drone is manufactured by DJI and outfitted with specialized Skycatch technology, representing the first time DJI has manufactured a custom drone for a partner.

The Skycatch Explore1 drone autonomously flies over job sites to create highly accurate 3D site maps and models. The aircraft will be deployed on Komatsu job sites, and the map data will be used for Komatsu Smart Construction’s new data service that enables robotic earth moving equipment – used in the earthwork stage of the construction process – to correctly dig, bulldoze and grade land autonomously according to digital construction plans.

The Explore1 drone is built on DJI’s customizable Matrice 100 enterprise drone platform and is part of Skycatch’s High Precision Package, along with the Edge1 RTK base station, a ruggedized computer with software that locally processes drone images into precise 3D models, regardless of wireless connectivity and location.

Skycatch-Viewer-Point-Cloud-1 DJI, Skycatch Making 1,000 Custom Drones for Construction Company
Source: Skycatch

“Being the first company to integrate into DJI’s manufacturing process will deliver incredible value to our customers worldwide,” says Christian Sanz, CEO of Skycatch. “By combining DJI’s mastery of hardware manufacturing and aerial technology with Skycatch’s data processing and customer expertise, we’ve created the most powerful and comprehensive solution for enterprise customers everywhere.”

“The Explore1 demonstrates DJI’s strategy to provide customers with the most powerful and reliable drone platforms on the market that can be tailored to the needs of any industry,” adds Jan Gasparic, head of enterprise partnerships at DJI.

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Skycatch has been touting their “fantastic drone technology” for years and even got backing from Andreeson. Yet, they have to contract a Chinese consumer toy maker to solve this problem? Very telling of how little they have accomplished.