360 Drone Busins – Sam Noakes

For this semester I have been following the development and progress of “360 drone” project in relation to how could drone would gives cost effective and safe time in bridge inspection. I following this project through his website ‘Free look’, ‘THINK Sam’ and his twitter under named Sam Noakes [@samnoakes95]. His project pitch was one of the best pitch I seen so far, it is really interesting that he think out side the box because normally drone would have the camera at the bottom. At his presentation, he bring the drone that he build so that it’s allow the 360 camera to be mounted on top. During the pitch he also give tutor and peers a demo of how his ‘look up’ drone works by flying drone and shoe how to live 360 camera to the external monitor [ideally for 2 operator].

Through out the processes it is really clear that the project have developed it’s aims resulting from the experiment and development of the project. At the beginning of the semester the aim is to have a drone that perfectly and could be replace the tradition bridge inspection, which will safe a lot of resources and time to finish the same job. As the project develop, aims develop. This is a potential business for Sam, and he sees it. The project is planning and aiming for a patent [Ip: standard & innovative] and more field-testing. At this stage he is aiming to get a UAV licensing, market support [funding]. This will allow him to start the business service and use the drone commercially.

If you were listening to the class discussion that he ran on week 8 you would know that he have zero background about drone, no idea how to build it, no money support. What he has was a strong passion for quad copter, RC media, and technology. He told me that the project was starting last year when he was doing a project fro digc202. At the time he is using drone for agriculture and the concepts of surveillance and bridge inspection are coming along the way. This year, digc302 is a great opportunity for him to continue to do what he loves. In week 5 he explaining about how bridge inspection works, it is inconvenience for people who want to use the road, and the inspection also take long time and a lot of resource to complete. He also did some research about drone and found out that there is no 360 video camera drone [commercial drone] in the market at the moment and everyone of it look down, none of it look up. This is inspired him to DIY custom mount ‘360 fly’ to the top of a drone. This then allows the operator to look up under the bridge and inspection. To do this Sam been contacted with RMS and pitched his idea to them. Lucky they give him enough funds to build the prototype. The prototype concept is very straight “develop a drone for the purpose of surveying bridges”.

The project is target at RMS; special design drone for minimized the cost and time of the bridge inspection or other business that require “look up”. He chose to present his project through many platforms such as; blogging, YouTube, Prezi, twitter and etc. the main platform is blogging, which I think it is the right tool for the job as it is allow viewer to see the development time line. Site blogging allow him to put everything together and make it to portfolio. So when he wanting to present the project to the new client he has all the work he done in one piece.

From the beginning to today it is clear that Sam have to do a lot of research on how to build a drone and how all the electronic works. He have to ordered all the part and have to make sure they are work well together, with the limited budget it is hard work. His recent achievement is ‘UOW Pitch 2016’, which will gives him 6,000$ personally and scholarship offer to iAccelerate. This is a big opportunity for him to make his project bigger.

His work has show to every one that you don’t have to know something to do something just give it a try and never give up. 360 drone business is a very inspire project for drone user and none drone user. Sam always posting a new technology that he find out on twitter and the project website for example; FPV Drone: cocoon Voyager, Cheerson CX-10c: Nano Drone. This type of post will bring more attention to the drone community and hopefully will bring in more people.

At the ‘project beta’ today we were just talking about overall project development and what he planning to do next. As I said before that Sam is looking to get a patent, as of now he still not sure what patent he should get [more about patent here]. Me and Sam also talking about what could be done to make the project better and we agree that avoid obstacles censor facing up would make the project a lot safer e.g. if the pilot flying drone up too fast and going to hit the bottom of the bridge, this censor will overrun and stop before collision happen.

During the presentation he show us the video and I think the footage is a little bit shaky, which make it harder to see the detail. This is one of the YouTube ‘How to’ I found and think it will be really useful for the drone project. It is “how to make DIY camera gimbal”, all the parts and how to put them together are in the video. It is easy to put together and Sam can probably do it with Arduino [in meda202] I think this would perfection your drone business project.


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