UAS Field Services

Your needs are unique. Below are typical services we perform for UAS/RPAAS (Remotely Piloted Aerial Application Systems) clients.

Contact us to create your custom tailored field service package.

Discovery Services (phone or onsite, includes 1-5 one hour sessions)

Spraying at very low rates isn't as easy as it seems, and laying down a uniform, a high quality application is even more difficult. Many drones on the market do not have as precise a control of their spray as you may be led to believe. The nozzles and check valves provided may or may not suit your application. Just because you typed an application rate and a speed into a controller doesn't mean that's what happened. Every journey starts with the first step, and learning how to make your drone an effective spraying tool is no different.

Typical cost: $150/hour

  • Review of your drone and application system, your application needs and operational limitations.

  • Fundamentals of low volume spraying, What is known, what is known unknown, and what is unknown unknown.

  • Outcomes: better understanding of spray deposition and swath principles, better understanding of what your drone is actually doing, actionable things you can do to tighten up your drone applications, better knowledge of what to ask a contractor if you're hiring it done.

Visual and Tactile Demonstration Methods (onsite 1-3 days)

We're "show me, don't tell me" kind of folks, and we'd bet you and your potential clients are too. This activity is onsite with your drone. Learn techniques to show and verify your spray quality, even in deep canopies. No parlor tricks, these are real-world methods used by scientists. You can do them without a PhD, and anyone can easily interpret the results.

Typical Cost: $2,000 to $5,000

Visible dye on paper deposition

Fluorescing dyes for 2 and 3 dimensional and canopy penetration understanding

Downwind drift with visual dye

Internal understanding drone capabilities in real-world conditions, powerful tools to visually advise customers of your capabilities.

Drone deposition fluorescing dye on weeds in corn

Drone Instrumentation and Real-time Validation (onsite 2-4 days)

Most drone controls are one-way. You tell them what you want to put out, but they don't confirm with real data whether they did it. Further, most don't tell you operating pressures and other key parameters that are critical to nozzle function and actual flow rate. As a result, a lot of drone sprays are highly non-uniform, and that can be a problem. Spraying without this information is the equivalent of shooting in the dark. Variations in speed and flow rates can lead to 50% or more over or under application rate errors pretty quickly.

This is a deep data dive targeted primarily at resellers, manufacturers, researchers and developers, but any interested party may contract. We fully instrument your drone onsite at your location with lightweight yet robust instrumentation for real-time data collection during a spray. All of our instrumentation is independent from the drone's control system. All data is time and RTK-GPS stamped so you can go back and see what actually happened at any given place and time, and correlate weather and other data.

Drone instrumentation provides the following Time and RTK-GPS stamped data:

  • Actual pressure, left and right side.

  • Actual flow rate, left and right side.

  • Actual height off off ground (ultrasonic sensor).

  • Position (RTK GPS).

  • Sprayer pitch and yaw (forward/sideways lean).

This data can be displayed spatially in an as-applied format to show uniformity of flow and pressure and precision of start and stop over the flown swath.

Typical Cost varies depending on individual objectives, travel, and data products requested. Instrumentation not included in the price of this purchase. we will restore the drone to its original condition upon completion. Client may keep the instrumentation at additional cost.

Deposition and Drift Research (onsite or our site)

Publication grade field research including quantitative or qualitative analysis. Any combinations of the following:

  • Swath measurement, liquids or solids

  • Uniformity of deposition/penetration: 1 sided, 2 sided, 3 dimensional

  • Off-swath drift as horizontal flux or downwind sedimentation (or both)

  • Drone downwash and vortex characterization: Smoke, flags, video

  • Swath offset measurement at height

  • Deliverables: from raw data to fully developed manuscripts for publication.

Field research is a highly detailed activity that involves careful planning and proper site selection. We can complete research on our own or we can compliment your team or any combination in between. Costs for field studies is quoted based on needs and client objectives.

Vertical flux shows the height and quantity of spray drift as it crosses the downwind field edge
Classical drift sedimentation shows the relative fraction of sprayed material that falls to the ground downwind.