Sanborn’s Commercial UAS Pilots Ready for Action

Colorado Springs, Colo.-based Sanborn Map Company Inc. says several of its pilots have completed extensive unmanned aircraft system (UAS) training and now are qualified to perform commercial flights with the firm’s UAS.

Earlier in 2015, the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) granted Sanborn a Section 333 exemption to commercially operate a UAS, a vertical take off and landing platform with a 15-pound payload capacity. According to the FAA exemption document, the UAS is a Leptron Avenger; a later amendment also approved the RDASS4 for operations.

The company says it has already completed several commercial UAS data collection projects, as well as numerous test flights, to validate the system’s geospatial data collection capabilities. The efforts have brought forth a portfolio of services, including engineering-grade digital terrain models exceeding two-inch accuracy; multispectral frame imagery at sub-centimeter resolution; vibration-free video; high-resolution LiDAR data; and thermal imaging data.

Sanborn’s UAS services include damage assessment and response efforts; site mapping; water resource mapping; volumetric assessment and asset estimation; highway survey and accident mapping; corridor asset review, assessment and mapping; and precision agriculture. In November, Sanborn contracted with the City of Denver to provide aerial UAS imagery of public golf courses.

In addition to providing UAS flight services, Sanborn offers a range of image processing and analysis services for all imagery collected. As with all Sanborn offerings, the UAS data is available as a licensed product within the firm’s cloud service – allowing customers to cost-effectively store and securely access their data around the clock, says Sanborn. Customers also can purchase and host the data on their own servers.


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