A counting tool added to the DroneDeploy cloud-based commercial drone platform is designed to enable users to make accurate counts of distinct features of scanned landscapes – such as trees in an orchard, energy-gathering panels in a solar farm and cattle in a field.
This latest update builds on speed, resolution and accuracy enhancements to the platform, which provides flight planning for automated crop scouting and mapping sorties, an image processing algorithm customised for agriculture with crop image stitching and access to more than 70 apps from agricultural image, mapping and data analytics specialists.
DroneDeploy also provides real-time imagery with its Live Map feature, which is compatible with DJI Phantom 4 drones and newer and iOS devices produced from early 2016 or later.
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Live Map, which is enabled as part of the flight planning process, enables users to see an aerial view from the drone while in flight and create maps that can be saved and shared with farm staff and advisors, creating the potential to make immediate action decision based on what the images reveal.
Hours or days of waiting for crop imagery are over
User Justin Metz, technology integration specialist at Bowles Farms in the United States, says of the feature: “Hours or days of waiting for crop imagery are over. We can capture real-time data in seconds without an internet connection, and begin making smarter crop management decisions before the drone hits the ground.”
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— DroneDeploy (@DroneDeploy) 7 November 2018
The new Count Annotation tool for desktop and laptop computers enables users to click on identified objects within a map without risking the accuracy of the dataset and different types of objects can be labelled and counted within the same map.
The number of clicks are recorded and held in an annotation report that can be shared directly with the farm team and/or stakeholders as appropriate. For the longer term, DroneDeploy managers say they are working on automated counting of a number of common objects.
In the video below ag professionals at Bowles Farming Company and Colby AgTech talk about how they use DroneDeploy to generate aerial insights and assist their precision agriculture programs.