Today’s mapping technology is invaluable in the field, increasing perspective and knowledge of building material movement, equipment locations, and construction progress.

3D Robotics,, Baja, Calif., recently launched new 3DR Mapping Platforms, consisting of the 3DR X8-M (multi-copter) and Aero-M (fixed-wing), with highly accurate resolution that allows users to zoom in from far to near—essentially from the sky “down to the grape.” Each platform is bundled with both hardware and software solutions, with a high-resolution visible-spectrum camera, protective hard-case, auto-pilot controlled image acquisition and professional image processing software powered by Pix4D, 3DR’s newest business partner.

For the new 3DR Mapping Platform, there is a straightforward, fully automated three-step workflow: plan, fly, process. The flight planning software computes flight paths over a selected area to survey and calculate exactly which pictures to take and when. During the inflight period, the drones automatically capture those images and geo-tag each capture to note the exact location. During drone landing period, the user immediately has a series of crisp and accurate images that can then be geo-referenced by the Pix4D software to automatically create a high-resolution, ortho-rectified 2D mosaic map (or 3D model depending on chosen edition) that delivers accurate and immediately actionable data.

What are the benefits of 3DR Mapping Platforms? They include savings through on-demand, high frequency monitoring, and the ability to take informed and targeted action. For conservation and land and resource management applications, 3DR Mapping Platforms can increase understanding of how we use precious land and water resources.

The X8-M offers low-flying and high accuracy mapping, with a completely redundant propulsion system for increased reliability. The Aero-M fixed-wing platform provides endurance and coverage area, with 40 minutes of flight and 250 acres of coverage. The low-cost, high-accuracy platforms enable professionals to maximize budget and improve response time by not waiting to schedule satellite imagery or incurring the expense and risk of using manned aircraft to gather data.

Features of 3DR Mapping Platforms include: “down to the grape” resolution; all-in-one mapping solution: bundled with Canon SX260 12 MP camera and Pix4Dmapper LT for 3DR professional image processing software; and fully automated three-step workflow.