By Kalwinder Kaur
Insitu Pacific, Insitu’s subsidiary located in Queensland, Australia declared the deployment of its ScanEagle unmanned aircraft system (UAS) for the Queensland Government in the Department of Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry (DAFF) for carrying out UAS-based first Siam weed detection trials.
According to Insitu Pacific Managing Director, Andrew Duggan, these UAS trials demonstrate the substantial safety and operational advantages of using UAS in commercial applications.
The trials in Far North Queensland will take place four days during June end. The density and size of the Siam weed population will be surveyed using ScanEagle UAS. Siam weed thrives in Central America.
The trial’s findings will be reported back to DAFF by Insitu Pacific for more analysis. The DAFF will therefore be equipped with information for removing pest weed before spreading.
Duggan further said that Insitu is pleased to collaborate with Queensland Government on this initiative. Earlier work in monitoring marine mammals beyond the coasts of Queensland and Western Australia was successful in manifesting UAS potential to safely operate within civilian airspace.
The deployment of UAS within civilian airspace is an affordable alternative, thereby minimizing the potential risks related to sending out manned helicopter crews on low-altitude, extended surveillance missions with minimal margin for error.
The ScanEagle UAS is remotely controlled from a ground control station. The risk profile is lower than manned operations.
Since June 2009, Australian-based Insitu Pacific has been offering UAS services to defence, civil and commercial interests within the Asia-Pacific region.