ORGANIZING YOUR DATA
Considering the complete workflow for drone-based visual inspection, data acquisition is only a first step. In a second step, the data must be analyzed to extract useful information. With Elios 1 and Elios 2, the pilot can record points of interest (POIs) during the flight and easily find them in the video stream using Inspector, Flyability’s desktop software. However, the pilot may have overlooked some defects or objects of interest, and it is therefore common to carefully review the videos after a series of flights. Also, it is often crucial to understand where the data was acquired, and localize the POIs on blueprints or CAD models. Usually, this is achieved by watching the video again and building a mental map of the asset (keep in mind that indoor datasets do not contain geolocalization information). To determine the position of POIs, it is sometimes required to count repeating elements such as beams, welds, intersections, or other obvious visual features. This method works, but is cumbersome and not really scaleable.
In some situations, 3D modeling can drastically simplify this tedious and time-consuming task. With a 3D model and the trajectory of the drone, it is much easier to navigate in the dataset, to review only the relevant images and to understand the location of the POIs. The risk of errors – such as confusing repeating elements – decreases and the overall understanding of the asset geometry becomes clearer.