Texas Drone Professionals has recently been acquired by McCord Engineering to create the most modern and accurate system mapping and data analysis package for both public electric utilities and electric co-ops alike. We fly distribution or transmission using: LiDAR (3D laser scanner), photo, video, FLIR (thermal infrared)  and NDVI (near infrared for vegetation analysis).

McCord Engineering Geospatial Services will handle the aircraft, insurance, FAA and anything else required to complete your job. We will analyse and package your data for you in human-readable reports. These hassle-free services allow you to move quickly to acquire the data you need.

LiDAR Transmission Drone

LiDAR Transmission Drone

Drone Benefits to Electric Utilities:

  • NERC Compliance Mapping & Clearance Analysis
  • Line Ratings
  • Danger Zone Assessments
  • System Mapping
  • Emergency Management
  • As-Built Surveys
  • Topographical Surveys
  • Joint-Use Audits
  • Substation Surveys
  • Vegetation Analysis
  • and more…

MEI Workflow:

  1. Define Job Area (.kmz files)
  2. Define Deliverables
    1. Point cloud
    2. Geolocated Video
    3. Geolocated Photos
    4. Geolocated FLIR
    5. NDVI Vegetation Analysis
    6. Promotional Videos
    7. Mosaic
    8. Topography
    9. Close Item Inspection – video, photos or FLIR
  3. Check for COA Requirements
  4. Confirm Property Permissions
  5. Plan Mission
  6. Set Ground Control
  7. Fly Property
  8. Process Data
  9. Deliverables

Featured here in Texas Co-op Power Magazine flying electric utilities LiDAR for McCord Engineering Geospatial Services and their customer Pedernales Electric Co-op:

Featured here in Texas Co-op Power Magazine flying electric utilities LiDAR for McCord Engineering and their customer Pedernales Electric Co-op


Drone LiDAR strengths?
We can fly over hard-to-reach locations and areas of heavy road traffic. We can help small companies obtain large projects and any company can use us for smaller areas. We can also penetrate heavy tree canopies, finding ground points in otherwise impossible to reach locations.

Drone LiDAR weaknesses?
Our LiDAR doesn’t penetrate water and it can’t map items buried underground.

What kind of density can we produce?
We collect 700,000 shots/sec. That produces a point density of 500 points per square meter, or 50 points per square foot.

What is our accuracy?
We have a 2cm horizontal and 5cm vertical accuracy. Total volumetric accuracy is within 3%.

How do you keep the accuracy?
With LiDAR or photogrammetry, we use ground control points for absolute point cloud positioning (we make sure the data matches your specs).

How do you check accuracy?
In addition to ground control points, we use visual landmarks and other known “check points” to verify accuracy within the point cloud.

Are Drones legal to use in commercial business?
The rules relative to drones in commercial business are changing on a regular basis. As a drone company it is part of our service to stay current on the FAA requirements for operation. As of the start of 2017, you can operate drones for business if you have:

  1. An FAA Exemption 333 or Part 107 license
  2. A registered “N-numbered” aircraft
  3. Appropriate COA, certificate of authorization for your flying location
  4. Permission from the owner or authorized agent of the property

Drones can be operated in most locations with what is called a “Blanket COA”. This COA is part of the 107 license. Some areas, such as close to airports require special authorization from the FAA. This authorization can take from a few days to a few weeks depending on the specific location.

There are many more details relating to the legal and safe operation of drones in US Airspace. We can provide more details upon request. The most important detail is it is completely legal to operate when you follow the appropriate FAA regulations.

Safety?
We operate at all times with our authorized Pilot and “Observer”. If the job warrants, we add extra crew members to keep needed areas clear and safe for flight.

The aircraft we use have several safety features in the case of technical issues during a mission. We can supply further details upon request.

Liability?
McCord Engineering Geospatial Services carries at least $2 million in Liability insurance. If your company requires a specific level of insurance coverage we can make sure to match or exceed that level before starting work.


Contact Us

Please don't hesitate to contact us using the form below:

Alternatively, you may email: dwilkerson@mccordeng.com

Or Call:Phone: 979-690-3880


Electric Utilities