Skydio, a U.S.-based drone manufacturer known for its autonomous flight technology, has revealed a strategic partnership with Trimble, a company specializing in navigation, surveying, and mapping equipment. This joint effort aims to refine workflows within critical infrastructure sectors such as construction, utilities, and transportation through the integration of precise data capture and analytics with autonomous drones.
During Trimble’s annual Dimensions user conference, details emerged about the developmental collaboration, which is set to merge Skydio’s autonomous drones, like the newly announced Skydio X10, with Trimble GNSS receivers and software. This fusion promises customers centimeter-level accuracy in surveying and mapping projects, a significant upgrade in precision for the involved industries.
The Skydio X10 is an autonomous quadcopter outfitted with advanced visual and thermal camera sensors. This type of drone is already a go-to tool for industry professionals, allowing them to gather real-time condition reports for infrastructure. When coupled with Trimble Construction Cloud, the companies assert that the technology will not only streamline workflow but also bolster project efficiency and accuracy, potentially reducing common rework costs that plague construction projects.
Gagan Kanwar, Skydio’s Head of Technology Partnerships, underscored the importance of the collaboration, stating it "brings together two leading companies and their innovative technologies" and will provide "survey-grade accuracy in mapping missions" which can rapidly translate data into actionable insights.
Aviad Almagor, Vice President of Technology Innovation at Trimble, echoed the sentiment, highlighting the enhanced capability this partnership brings to Trimble’s ecosystem, providing customers with a fully integrated workflow "from data acquisition to analytics."
The collaboration boasts several key benefits:
- Automated Data Integration: Utilizing an API-based integration, the partnership purports to enable a smooth transfer of drone-captured imagery and metadata into the Trimble Industry Cloud. This integration is expected to streamline the transformation of reality-capture data into actionable insights for expedited and more informed decision-making.
- Survey-Grade Accuracy: The Skydio X10 drone, equipped with an RTK GPS attachment, is slated to achieve compatibility with Trimble’s GNSS receivers, offering customers the precision of survey-grade mapping. This compatibility suggests that mutual clients can look forward to high-fidelity mapping missions when using Skydio drones alongside Trimble’s technology.
For now, the partnership between Skydio and Trimble represents a significant step toward more technologically advanced surveying and mapping solutions, aiming to make construction and infrastructure inspection both more accurate and cost-effective. Industry observers and potential customers will be watching closely as these solutions evolve from the developmental phase into practical applications.