American Robotics Inc., which provides fully autonomous commercial drones, yesterday said that Stockpile Reports will use its Scout system to build out its automated drone program. The companies said that the ability to operate unmanned aerial vehicles without any humans on the ground will enable Stockpile Reports and its users to collect data in new ways.
“The bulk materials industry suffers chronic financial write-offs due to a lack of accurate inventory data, and Stockpile Reports helps customers solve problems with inventory using on-demand measurements from image processing, stated David Boardman, founder and CEO of Stockpile Reports. “As experts in 3D reconstruction and digitization, we know what it means to dance on the edge of innovation.”
“Autonomous drones will provide an opportunity to aggressively scale the real-time digitization of large industrial stockpiled materials,” he added. “Our strategic customers will use autonomous drones to drive operational efficiency.”
Redmond, Wash.-based Stockpile Reports provides systems for the bulk materials industry and serves over 300 companies in 48 countries.
Drones to address infrastructure demands
Billions of dollars have been invested into improving U.S. infrastructure, but too often, that money is spent to reactively fix damage rather than proactively to maintain roads, pipelines, electrical grids, and more, said the partners.
With more than 10,000 sand and gravel mines and more than 3,000 ready-mix and asphalt plants in the U.S. alone, Stockpile Reports said it will work with American Robotics to deploy autonomous drones to address market demands.
“We are excited to partner with American Robotics as the leader in this technology, “said Boardman. “The opportunity is limitless, as we see the potential to deploy hundreds if not thousands of autonomous drones as we create inventory solutions for our customers across the bulk materials supply chain.”
American Robotics said its system can provide a cost-effective way to proactively monitor and inspect assets in the oil and gas and infrastructure sectors. Capable of running up to 20 autonomous flights per day, Scout automatically transmits valuable data for decision makers to review and act upon instantly, said the Marlborough, Mass.-based company.
“We are thrilled to be working with Stockpile Reports and enabling them to access the data and insights only possible through automated drones,” said Reese Mozer, co-founder and CEO of American Robotics. “At the end of the day, our industry’s product is data, not aircraft. With true automation comes the ability to collect a new category of data not previously possible, resulting in a new category of valuable analytics and insights.”
FAA approval builds interest in American Robotics
American Robotics was founded by leading roboticists from Carnegie Mellon University and Stanford University and focuses on designing, developing, and marketing drones for real-world environments. It offers Scout as a “drone-in-a-box” turnkey data service under a robotics-as-a-service (RaaS) business model.
American Robotics noted that Scout is the first and only drone system approved by the U.S. Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) for automated beyond visual line-of-sight (BVLOS) operations with no humans on site. In the six months since it received FAA approval, the company has reported an 80% increase in business-development activity in key industrial sectors, including infrastructure.
In addition, the MassRobotics member said it has supported its rapid growth by adding team members such as Kevin Willis, who was recently appointed as vice president of sales. In just six months, American Robotics has increased full-time employees by 90%, and it said it expects its headcount to grow at a similar rate through 2021 and 2022.
American Robotics recently announced its planned merger with Ondas Holdings Inc., a developer of proprietary, software-based wireless broadband technology. Ondas and American Robotics said they offer complementary technologies and provide critical, next-generation data solutions to customers such as Stockpile Reports.
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