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Surveying seedlings for precision forestry

In Issue34, Video by FIEALeave a Comment

In the last few decades, the forestry sector has embraced a range of new precision management tools and techniques to manage forests on a new scale. Precision management is based on the concept that big productivity gains can come from smaller-scale, tailored management techniques. To continue this evolution, the forestry sector will require new technologies for data capture, giving rise …

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Climate right for raising tech funds

In Issue33, Video by FIEALeave a Comment

Startups are capitalising on renewed interest in environmental solutions after Australia’s bushfires brought climate change to the front of investors’ minds.  “We’ve got a problem in front of us. If we don’t act, it will get worse. Where there’s a problem, there’s a market,” co-founder of AirSeed Technologies Andrew Walker said.  Late last year in the Friday Offcuts newsletter, we covered the …

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World’s first autonomous UAV flight under a forest canopy?

In Issue32, Video by FIEALeave a Comment

An unmanned aerial vehicle made what is believed to be the world’s first autonomous flight under a forest canopy in Rotorua, New Zealand in late November 2019. Remote sensing scientists from Scion have been working with Emesent, a company who specialises in designing automated systems to collect spatial data in challenging environments, to test out the Hovermap navigation system in …

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500 billion trees by 2060 – using drones

In Issue32, Video by FIEALeave a Comment

• UK company Dendra plans to plant 500 billion trees by 2060 – using AI and drones.• The drones can plant 120 seedpods per minute.• The WWF estimates we’re losing 27 football fields of forest every minute due to deforestation. A drone can plant two trees per second, according to UK tech company Dendra, which is aiming to “re-green” the …

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Huge autonomous drone completes maiden flight

In Issue32, Video by FIEALeave a Comment

Another delivery drone has just buzzed into view, and this one’s a giant. Built by aerospace manufacturer Bell, the Autonomous Pod Transport 70 — or APT 70 for short — is a 180-cm-tall Vertical Takeoff and Landing (VTOL) aircraft that can carry cargo weighing up to 70 pounds at a top speed of 100 mph. Range comes in at 18 …

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UAV advancements for forest inventory

In Issue28, Video by FIEALeave a Comment

Every year, over 250 resource managers, remote sensing, GIS and mapping specialists, inventory foresters and technology providers from throughout Australasia (and more recently SE Asia) meet up at the annual ForestTECH technology series. Since 2007, it’s the one event every year that’s run in both Australia and New Zealand focussing on this particular part of the forestry industry. In a …

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Drone swarms for tree planting and spraying operations

In Issue27, Video by FIEALeave a Comment

Towards the end of last year we covered an article about a Seattle Startup company, DroneSeed that was automating tree planting and spraying operations using drones. Their custom UAV platforms, equipped with multispectral camera arrays, high-end lidar, 23 litre tanks of herbicide and proprietary seed dispersal mechanisms at the time had been hired by several major forest management companies, with …

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Hi-tech shirt for forestry workers

In Issue27, Video by FIEALeave a Comment

A shirt with built-in sensors could help reduce fatalities in New Zealand’s forestry industry. Researchers at the University of Waikato are developing a hi-tech way to keep forestry workers safe on the job, with a ‘smart shirt’ the leading contender. Using sensors on the front of the shirt to monitor heart-rate variability and others on the back to measure perspiration, …

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Unmanned Helicopter for Heavy Lifts

In Issue26, Video by FIEALeave a Comment

A Robinson R22 helicopter was converted by UAVOS to an unmanned drone. UAVOS— which specializes in the design, development and manufacturing of unmanned vehicles and autopilot systems — successfully completed in-air programmed missions with the unmanned helicopter. The first flight this spring of the modernized helicopter lasted more than one hour and was performed in a fully self-piloted mode, reaching an altitude of up …

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SpaceX goes big for launch

In ForestTECH, Issue26, Video by FIEALeave a Comment

SpaceX, the rocket company founded by Elon Musk, successfully launched in May its first five dozen Starlink telecommunications satellites. This is the first step in the Starlink project, which aims to create an ultra-fast global internet service. SpaceX broadcast the inaugural Starlink mission, which launched aboard a Falcon 9 rocket at 10:30 p.m. ET. A little more than an hour after liftoff, …

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Amazon’s new transforming Prime Air delivery drone

In Issue26, Video by FIEALeave a Comment

Amazon has unveiled the latest version of its Prime Air delivery drone, a hybrid aircraft that’s capable of vertical takeoff and landing as well as sustained forward flight. The company says it wants to launch a delivery service using the drone in “the coming months,” but has not said where this might take place or how many customers it might cover. …

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Introducing Scale-Up NZ: The gateway to innovation ecosystem

In Issue24, Video by FIEALeave a Comment

A free online platform has just been launched to connect New Zealand businesses with funders, incubators, multinationals and other collaborators. Scale-Up NZ, from Callaghan Innovation, shines a light on our thriving innovation ecosystem.It delivers accurate insights on ambitious, innovative New Zealand companies, removing information gaps that too often prevent our businesses from achieving their potential. The late physicist and entrepreneur …

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World-First Approval For Drone Deliveries Of Food And Medicine In Australia

In Issue24, Video by FIEALeave a Comment

Google’s parent company has launched a world-first commercial air delivery business in Canberra’s north, delivering gelato and golfing equipment by drone directly to homes. Wing, run by Google’s overarching company Alphabet, has been trialling delivering burritos, coffee and medication by drone in a suburb on the fringes of Canberra for a year. For months, a depot in Canberra’s industrial suburb …

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Trimble Unveils Next-gen Mixed-reality Device with Microsoft HoloLens 2

In ForestTECH, Issue23, Video by FIEA

Trimble has announced a new wearable hard hat compatible device that enables workers in safety-controlled environments to access holographic information on the worksite—the Trimble® XR10 with HoloLens 2. In addition, an expanded set of Trimble software and services will be available to provide field-oriented workflows that leverage constructible 3D models and mixed reality to solve daily work tasks. The announcement …

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Drone sets a new world record

In ForestTECH, Issue22, Video by FIEA

During FPT Industrial’s Tech day, FPT Industrial and Forvola broke the Guinness World Record for the heaviest payload lifted by a drone. With 16 propellers giving it enough oomph to lift hefty objects, Forvola’s megadrone lifted a 5 ft. box of FPT Industrial spare parts that weighed in at about 220 lbs. The drone held this weight for more than …

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Delair Launches Aerial Intelligence Platform

In Issue22, Video by FIEA

Delair, a leading supplier of commercial drone solutions, has unveiled Delair Aerial Intelligence, a comprehensive platform for converting drone-based images into actionable business insights. The new cloud-based solution provides a complete integrated workflow to manage, analyse and share data, streamlining the process for unlocking the true potential of aerial surveying. Industry-optimised analytics for a wide range of specific industries and …

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Drone delivery takes off in Australia

In ForestTECH, Issue20, Video by FIEA

At Amsterdam Drone Week, James Burgess of Google X spinoff Wing showed a system of drone delivery that’s made over 2500 customer flights in a test outside of Canberra, Australia. In the last nine months, Wing – graduated from Project X and now independent under parent company Alphabet – has worked on a widespread test of drone delivery in a …

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DroneSeed automating tree planting

In ForestTECH, Issue20, Video by FIEA

Wildfires are consuming North American forests and grasslands faster than we can replace them. It’s a vicious cycle of destruction and inadequate restoration rooted, so to speak, in decades of neglect of the institutions and technologies needed to keep these environments healthy. DroneSeed is a Seattle-based start-up that aims to combat this growing problem with a modern toolkit that scales: …