Aerodyne teams up with AWS to solve complex industrial issues with drone data

  • With AWS, Aerodyne reduced customers' cellular tower costs by 20%
  • Agrimor, powered by Dronos, enables a 67% increase in crop yields for farmers

Aerodyne teams up with AWS to solve complex industrial issues with drone data

At AWS re:Invent in Las Vegas earlier this month, Amazon Web Services, Inc. (AWS) announced that Aerodyne, a drone solutions provider, is running its DRONOS software as a service (SaaS) platform on AWS to help drone operators worldwide grow their businesses. Malaysian-based, Aerodyne operates drone solutions for the telecommunications, agriculture, surveillance, logistics, and energy industries in 45 countries, said AWS in a statement.

Dronos is an innovative end-to-end drone service platform enabling users to onboard, analyse, and make sense of drone data, optimising operations, driving efficiencies, and conducting aerial inspections to keep workers safely on the ground. In response to the growing need to maintain infrastructure, power companies and mobile network operators are increasingly using drones to collect operational data from towers and grids. Additionally, farmers are employing similar drone technology in fields to enhance precision agriculture.

In this case, Aerodyne created a data lake on AWS using Amazon Simple Storage Service (Amazon S3) to store and transform drone data, including images, satellite, agriculture, and weather data, into actionable insights. By utilizing Amazon SageMaker, a fully managed service for building, training, and deploying machine learning (ML) models, Aerodyne automates analysis on mobile phone towers and farm fields.

In the global telecommunications industry, monitoring, managing, and accurately monetising vast and remotely located infrastructure, such as cell towers and antennae, is critical to ensure continual connectivity. However, the infrastructure is often difficult to access and complicated to examine manually. 

Traditionally, cell tower inspections have been performed by human riggers—individuals who scale towers to manually install and maintain telephone lines and communication systems by climbing hundreds of feet into the air for visual inspections. In this scenario, drones automate the process, keeping human riggers safely on the ground and freeing up their time for higher-value tasks. Automating drone data analysis in the cloud, Aerodyne also assists cellular tower operators in verifying the physical conditions of towers and available space for new antennae, reducing labor time from two days to three hours.

The company is also aiding the agriculture sector in addressing global food security challenges through precision farming using drones. "With AWS, the startup has developed solutions like the Dronos-powered Agrimor platform, enabling farmers and agriculture service providers to use drones for agriculture seeding, spraying, plant analysis, and mapping—resulting in increased crop yields of up to 67%," said AWS.

Independent farmers to large palm oil plantation companies in Malaysia and Indonesia are using Agrimor to rapidly identify crop issues, like under-irrigation or disease, and deploy fertilisers or pesticides more efficiently, saving resources and ultimately driving food security and farmland profitability. As part of its global expansion, Aerodyne plans to extend the availability of its Agrimor to Brazil, Pakistan, Gambia, and Senegal in the coming years.

The rapidly growing global startup, which has doubled its revenue annually since its inception in 2014, claims that it has met the rising demand for new 5G cellular towers by deploying 5G antennae over 90% faster using ML on AWS. Utilising AWS, Aerodyne has reduced its customers’ cellular tower operational costs by an average of 20% and manual data processing costs by more than 70% compared with on-premises infrastructure.Aerodyne teams up with AWS to solve complex industrial issues with drone data

Kamarul A. Muhamed (pic), founder and group CEO at Aerodyne said, “Working with AWS has significantly transformed our ability to resolve complex industrial challenges, expand to more countries, and deepen our footprint in the global drone community. Our growth is only made possible by scaling our workloads on AWS to meet rising user demand.” 

“Through the agility of the cloud and the use of machine learning, we can bring valuable data together to help people across agriculture, telecommunications, and energy industries make faster and better decisions about their assets on the ground. We are very proud of our Dronos solution and what it has already achieved for mobile phone operators and are excited to replicate that success for other sectors,” he added.

Moving forward, Aerodyne plans to experiment with AWS’s generative artificial intelligence (generative AI) capabilities to build a large language model that can help companies better plan drone flights and visualise close to one petabyte of drone data. This involves insights from digital twins, which are virtual representations of physical infrastructure, such as towers, solar farms, or wind turbines that are available today. 

These digital twins will enable Aerodyne’s customers to centralise the management of physical assets by combining images and environmental data in real time. For example, mobile phone operators can use the Dronos platform to carry out more timely preventive maintenance, using fewer workers under safer conditions, without having to shut down cellular towers and interrupt service. In the energy industry, Aerodyne’s drone SaaS conducts visual and thermal inspections of infrastructure to detect issues like leaks or vegetation intrusion, reducing maintenance costs by 30%.

Conor McNamara, vice president of ASEAN at AWS emphasised “Startups worldwide rely on AWS to help them cost-effectively and rapidly transform into data-driven companies, with drone services serving as a prime example of how the latest cloud technologies and generative AI can revolutionize an entire industry. Aerodyne is swiftly going global with AWS, delivering its innovative drone service to customers worldwide and helping them turn insights from geospatial data into meaningful outcomes. The company’s Dronos platform is also helping solve complex issues, like food security, with the transformative power of AI, and we’re excited to support Aerodyne’s next phase of global expansion.”


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