The Use of Drones in Measuring Air Quality, Pollution &Treatment Controls

The Use of Drones in Measuring Air Quality, Pollution &Treatment Controls

Drones are extremely useful machines that can be used for a number of different purposes. One of the best means of utilizing drone technology is for monitoring pollution in the environment. There are many goals that can be achieved by the use of drones in this field such as:

  • Drones can be used to replace old sampling techniques.
  • They can provide an X-Y-Z platform that is both stable and precise for sample collection.
  • Drones can give you adequate time for collection of data that is integrated and time bound.
  • They are capable of providing real-time data as well as imagery.
  • Drones can be used for development of autonomous methods of sample collection.

There are two types of drones in existence that can help in determining air quality. The first one is the fixed wing type that can carry larger payloads, but it must remain in an X-Y plane with constant motion. The second one is the multi-rotor UAV that can only carry small payloads, but has the capability of collecting samples while it is in motion and also when it is hovering over a specific location.

The problem associated with drones is mainly the perception of the public. People consider drones to be very dangerous and a threat to their privacy. Some people even think that drones can give terrorists another method of spreading terror. To make matters worse, the FAA is also not in favor of using transport drones for commercial purposes. Until recently, only research drones were allowed to fly, and only over restricted areas, and can’t go over 400 feet above the ground as they may interfere with the airplanes used for public transportation.

However, despite all these challenges drones are being used in various air quality control methods for measuring particulate matter and VOCs as well as measurements relating to meteorology such as temperature, humidity, pressure and winds. In addition to this, drones can be used to continuously measure gases such as ozone and others that give us an idea about the environmental conditions.

Drones can be used successfully for this type of work because they are light in weight and can fly from one place to another relatively easily. They can be set up quickly whenever they are needed and can be deployed as per the requirement within a short period of time. Drones are capable of returning back to the place they flew from in case of failure of flight control.

With the help of drones, important information regarding air quality can be obtained in real-time in the form of photographs, videos as well as air samples. The wind speed and other attributes can also be measured using drones.

These drones can be utilized for a relatively low price. The reusability of drones along with its ability to capture pictures from a considerable distance makes it a great tool in this field. Images captured by satellite can be obscured by the presence of the clouds, but the drones stay below the clouds and are therefore able to give you a picture that is more inferable.