Mining sector leveraging drone technology to enhance operations

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Hub X in action. Image credit: Sphere Drones

Sphere Drones, a key player in the drone industry, has revolutionised businesses by offering a self-sustaining mobile drone platform that allows them to collect aerial data effortlessly across any terrain and in remote areas.

HubX is a self-sustaining mobile drone platform that businesses can use to capture aerial data on-site and deliver it back to the office with a single click.

The HubX, which is all-terrain, solar-powered, and internet-enabled, removes hurdles to Drone-in-a-Box (DiaB) deployment at mine sites, farms, utilities, and emergency services. It also has built-in redundancies to guarantee that organisations can continue to operate in remote areas and during network failures.

“HubX has been developed entirely at Sphere Drones’ Sydney headquarters for use by miners and utilities to streamline the most time-consuming surveying tasks, saving them thousands of hours and millions of dollars in the process,” Sphere Drones’ CEO Paris Cockinos said.

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“We have already attracted interest from our existing and new clients in Australia and overseas looking to either complement their own operation of drones or looking to Sphere Drones to manage their remote drone operations”, he added.

Sphere Drones’ high-profile clients include Yancoal, Rio Tinto, Fortescue Mining Group, Glencore, Roy Hill, Woodside Petroleum, Thiess, Sydney Water, and Agriculture Victoria.

Yancoal’s My Thorley Warkworth site Survey Superintendent and Chief Remote Pilot Adrian Wall stated that HubX’s evolution has the potential to streamline surveyors’ workloads, reduce field time, and increase data collection frequency by automating UAV (Unmanned Aerial Vehicle) operations.

“HubX includes everything you need to roll out a BVLOS (beyond visual line of sight) operation, it’s innovative, turnkey and portable which can help businesses like ours meet their daily operational requirements,” Warkworth stated.

Sphere Drones has assisted over 11,000 clients, including 3,000 corporates, in selling or renting drones, parts, accessories, software, training, and support for airborne and underwater operations.

“Sphere Drones provides the game-changing benefits of drone technology to save costs and provide more efficiencies to miners and other organisations,” Cockinos said.

An Australian Government study predicts that the expansion of drone use will significantly boost Australia’s economic growth, potentially resulting in up to $10 billion in business savings.

Drones are gaining significant cost savings in various industries, including mining, agriculture, forestry, construction, and fisheries.

Every month, more than 700 individuals in Australia are educated in drone operation, and 98 firms are granted licences, with about 10,000 drones already in commercial use.