New offerings on display at #Locate19

By on 11 April, 2019

The Flyability Elios at Sphere Drones’ exhibition booth.

#Locate19 kicked off with market day on Monday — here’s a glance at some of the new offerings exhibited.

Front and centre ion the exhibition hall were Vexcel Imaging, with their imposing array of aerial and terrestrial UltraCam products on display — the large format Condor looming large, and the sleek Panther backpack cutting an impressive profile in the booth.

Discussions around the newly-launched Geospatial Intelligence Centre at the Vexcel Imaging booth.

Prominently branded at the Vexcel booth was the Geospatial Intelligence Centre, launched in Australia and New Zealand at #Locate19. The GIC is a partnership between Vexcel, Esri, Microsoft, using the UltraCam capture hardware to provide an aerial imaging product of ultra high resolution 7.5 centimetre imagery over major metro areas, including obliques.

Introducing the GIC’s initial offerings in Australia and New Zealand at an opening plenary, director Ryan Bank walked through impressive vital stats for the ‘Blue Sky’ offering. 90 percent of Australia and New Zealand’s population will be covered by this 7.5 centimetre service, with the remainder by 20 centimetre wide angle capture.

Whilst serving the insurance industry foremost, the products are made available to first responders free of charge following natural disasters, when the GIC also offers a ‘Grey Sky’ service for insurers — teams of local pilots doing rapid capture, with imaging products processes and available within 24 hours — a service due to launch in Australia and New Zealand later in the year.

Mangoesmapping also occupied a prominent position, with a range of new toys to showcase. First up is the freshly-minted NextCore RN series LiDAR unit, featuring some optimisations and a lower sticker price. The RN50 is available as a payload-only option — meaning it can be fitted to a wider range of UAVs than the DJI M600-specific first generation — and can be employed with a user’s pre-existing base station.

Topodrone RTK and PPK systems installed on DJI Mavic 2 and Phantom 4.

The Queensland-based provider was also displaying the Emlid Reach RS2 receiver, and a series of RTK, PPK and sensor systems from Swiss maker Topodrone, offering ready-to-fly packages for DJI Mavic and Phantom quadcopters, as well as the behemoth Topodrone VTOL RTY/PPK fixed wing drone. With an entire product range of survey-grade gear at aggressive price points, Mangoesmapping are establishing themselves as distributors catering to a new market that might previously have not such capable technology within reach.

Also in the ‘giant-killing’ category was Tersus, whose innovative and pint-sized GNSS receivers and RTK boards also offer high-accuracy spatial capability at a list price that was unheard of even two years ago before their introduction to the Australian market.

Whilst not launching anything brand new, Hexagon had the newly-launched and in-demand BLK3D imaging and measurement tool on display, a neat and very handy-looking unit to behold in the flesh.

Eagleview (formerly Spookfish) held down their traditional high quality coffee-powered booth throughout the three day event.

1Spatial, the Australian premier platinum partner for FME, announced the launch of new local government subscription pricing for SAFE software, allowing municipality or city jurisdictions with populations under 250,000 to access FME Desktop and Server on an unlimited basis for a single annual price.

Always a prominent and approachable presence, Airbus had a large and open position on the floor, with impressive demonstrations of their AI-driven OneAtlas and Verde analytics products available for live demonstrations.

Sphere Drones had an array of industry-focused multicopters and fixed wing UAVs on display, with the geodesic cage-enclosed Flyability Elios asset inspection drone for dangerous and enclosed environments drawing the most eyeballs of the impressive machines.

The above was just a small sample of the exhibitors on display, but a round up of the surprisingly minimal array of new offerings launching at this year’s Locate.

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