Inside the Drone Mission to Study Volcanos: Autel’s EVO Lite+ on Irazú
Autel Robotics Drone Deployed by Scientists for Volcano Research
by DRONELIFE Staff Writer Ian M. Crosby
An international team of scientists has deployed an Autel Robotics drone to monitor activities on Costa Rica’s Irazú Volcano.
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Selected for its high-quality sensor and durability, the Autel EVO Lite+ drone served as the perfect solution for conducting research using an Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (UAV).
Operable in conditions with up to 37 knot winds, the EVO Lite+ flew safely through 17 knots. The drone was operated by certified FAA Part 107 Remote Pilot Ian Godfrey, who is SINAC Certified for UAS (Unmanned Aircraft System) operations in National Parks. The team successfully collected data and applauded the drone’s performance in spite of the high altitude volcanic environment and windy conditions.
“Personally I really like the sensor and overall durability of the drone. We operated in many complex environments, and the drone performed perfectly,” said Godfrey. “These factors allowed us to gather the necessary data without complication. The drone performed wonderfully in high altitude volcanic environments and had great wind resistance, making it both an economical and ideal solution for conducting professional research with a UAS.”
The scientific team employed the Autel EVO Lite+ drone to record various elements of the Main Crater of the Irazú Volcano, such as lake water levels, areas of mineralization or crystallization, potential vents degassing volcanic emissions, and the absence of subaquatic fumaroles. The team also evaluated areas for risk of future rock falls and erosion or cracking within the volcano’s main crater. The EVO Lite+ proved its ability to generate both 2-D maps and 3-D models of volcanic geological features, and the team continues to leverage the drone in the field.
Autel’s EVO Lite+ camera drone is able to remain aloft for 40 minutes, and features cinematic flight modes and camera settings. The drone utilizes ultra wide angle obstacle avoidance to maneuver around environmental obstacles. Autel SkyLink and a transmission range of 7.4 provide crystal clear visuals. Autel’s moonlight algorithm grants first-rate low-light performance.
Ian attended Dominican University of California, where he received a BA in English in 2019. With a lifelong passion for writing and storytelling and a keen interest in technology, he is now contributing to DroneLife as a staff writer.
Miriam McNabb is the Editor-in-Chief of DRONELIFE and CEO of JobForDrones, a professional drone services marketplace, and a fascinated observer of the emerging drone industry and the regulatory environment for drones. Miriam has penned over 3,000 articles focused on the commercial drone space and is an international speaker and recognized figure in the industry. Miriam has a degree from the University of Chicago and over 20 years of experience in high tech sales and marketing for new technologies.
For drone industry consulting or writing, Email Miriam.
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