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Drones in Engineering and Construction

Discover the applications of these unmanned aircraft in the engineering and construction industries.

Overview

The engineering and construction industries are based on the human relationships between many project stakeholders to achieve delivery excellence.

Enhanced processes and digital tools cannot replace people, either as individuals or teams, but they are required to increase quality, reduce costs, mitigate safety risks and improve decision-making.

Drones, more accurately described in a business context as unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs), present increasingly attractive opportunities for achieving these goals.

Clearly, UAVs now offer a high level of automation enabling operators to reach previously inaccessible areas, while capturing a large amount of data very quickly. However, this is not their only use.

Accenture Consulting studied all possible applications of these unmanned aircraft in the engineering and construction industries, and the risks and opportunities they can bring.

So what does it take to turn them into value delivered?

BACKGROUND

UAVs can take different forms, with different levels of controls and the capacity to carry a very wide range of payloads: there are many types supporting different uses, but they are also subject to different regulations, depending on whether the aircraft is in or beyond the field of vision. They are built with intelligent stabilization systems to keep them flying and can carry sensors to perform dedicated functions. One of the most common devices is a camera mounted on gimbals to obtain high-quality video and still photography.

However, depending on their lift capacity and payload specifications, UAVs can also carry multiple sensors to extract a wide range of information, increasing the number of possible applications and the business value of their outcomes.

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KEY FINDINGS

What value will UAVs bring to engineering and construction businesses?

No longer limited to commercial activities, UAVs now demonstrate numerous possibilities to add business value. Potential business applications are wide ranging and they offer disruptive opportunities for companies in the engineering and construction industries. They can dramatically extend human operations by enabling remote sensoring as well as actuation and predictive capabilities. Such capabilities offer key benefits such as cost reduction, risk mitigation and quality improvements, thereby bringing a competitive advantage to their adopters.

  • Optimize costs of project and maintenance

  • Reduce Workers’ Exposure

  • Enable best decisions to Quality improvement

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Francois Laurent

Grégory Christophe
Managing Director, Leader of Infrastructure & Construction Industries in France
Francois Laurent

François Laurent
Acceture Consulting, Manager Infrastructure & Construction Industries