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The applications for not just AI software, but the combination of software and drone is almost frightening in the level of capability and scalability.

Aaron FlorenceFounder, Brimstone Site Investigation Ltd.
Aaron Florence is the founder and MD of Brimstone, the UK’s only government-assured explosive ordnance disposal and clearance (EOD/EOC) provider that delivers UXO disposal for the Royal Navy, British Army, and Royal Air Force. (Though they work on the development and civil engineering projects too.)

Brimstone have been at the forefront of drone UXO surveying “since the day drones were strong enough to carry a sensor” and are now turning to AI as a route for swifter and more accurate UXO identification, developing their specialist software along the way. We asked Aaron Florence why.

“For a start, it’s important to remember that the type of drone doesn’t matter. The only thing that matters is the data you get from it. But as we use drones to survey further and faster, the datasets get bigger and bigger. We collect it in one go, but it might take a month to process, and I don’t think we are at the stage where you can make a client wait that long anymore. We want to get that processing down to days – even one day – and the only way you can do that is with AI.

“Realistically, we are close to the point where you could fly drones ahead of troops on the battleground and identify UXO directly ahead of them in real-time – and save people from losing their legs or their lives.

“We’ve also been approached by several charities to help clear farmers’ fields in Ukraine. The recent conflict had Ukrainian farmlands so heavily mined that it could take months or years to identify and clear them by traditional methods. With a drone and AI, we estimate it could be done around 650 times faster… The farmers could start working those fields again, and agriculture in Ukraine could be back up and running more rapidly.

So, the applications for not just AI software, but the combination of software and drone is almost frightening in the level of capability and scalability.

Aaron FlorenceBrimstone Site Investigations

“And the most significant advantage of AI is that the more data you give it, the better it gets. With UXO, you could give it terabytes of data, and provided you get the quality assurance and control right, then each time it identifies a target, it will get a little bit better at identifying the next target and the one after that and the one after that.

But we couldn’t do what we do without Seequent and its products. It helps us give our clients the insights they need to progress their projects further, and it helps us do it transparently so our clients know we’re delivering what we promised. Seequent helps us cast light on our work, so it’s not seen as a dark art.”

For the full version of this feature, download our free eBook “Modernising UXO clean-up” and hear from other industry leaders how modern technology like drones and AI are making UXO detection cheaper, faster, and safer.

Modernising UXO eBook thumbnail Brimstone

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