VTOL takes off with Fyfe

Quantum Trinity F9 survey drone Fyfe
Fyfe team with Quantum Trinity F9 survey drone

Fyfe, a national consultancy, was interested in diversifying its RPAS fleet to advance its service capabilities even further for its clients and found that the Quantum Systems Trinity from Aptella offered optimum value for money.

“A major project we have been working on the Mt Pleasant Mine for MACH Energy; a green fields mine site situated in the Hunter Valley,” said Chris Nixon, NSW Survey Manager, Fyfe.

“This project has given us exposure to various surveying disciplines such as civil, rail, cadastral, engineering, drone, and mine monitoring, whilst also holding the statutory surveying role for the site.”

Quantum Systems Trinity F9 from Aptella

Why did Fyfe choose the Quantum Systems Trinity?

Mr Nixon and his team undertook extensive research to ensure Fyfe implemented the best solution to existing RPAS fleet.

“The Quantum Systems Trinity was chosen for a number of reasons. Namely it’s VTOL (vertical take-off and landing) capabilities and battery life,” said Mr Nixon.

“The VTOL component allows for safe take-off and landing in tight areas. We work on a large number of worksites that are high risk or with restricted space, so having a VTOL UAV is a big tick for us.”

The long battery life was another feature that really impressed Mr Nixon: “The long battery life (1 hour) allows us to cover large areas, compared to a standard multi-rotor battery life of around 20 minutes. The Trinity offered optimum value for money at the time we were evaluating this new technology. Due to the battery life, we can comfortably fly 250 hectares at 100m AGL for modelling which really increases our productivity and capabilities.”

Safety was another primary reason that Mr Nixon chose the Quantum Systems Trinity from Aptella and due to the varied work they undertake, a fixed wing with a belly landing was not an option for his team.

Surveyor using the Trinity F9 survey drone from Aptella

How has implementing the Quantum Systems Trinity changed the way Fyfe operates?

Fyfe has achieved a dramatic saving in time and increased efficiency since implementing the Quantum System Trinity from Aptella. At the same time, implementing the Quantum Systems Trinity has opened up the type of work that Fyfe can undertake.

“The Trinity is certainly bridging the gap between little drones and manned aircraft,” said Mr Nixon.

“Previously, we ran our Phantom 4 Pro drones with multiple batteries – bounded by area and time. This new technology allows us to minimise field time and limit our time around various hazards. This also benefits the client as we can spend less time in the field whist capturing large areas – this equates to good value for money.”

Mr Nixon has also found that the software has fit seamlessly with his current workflow.

“We geotag our PPK quality photos using survey accurate Rinex data within the Qbase software, and then upload to an online processing platform that can handle large amounts of data,” said Mr Nixon.

The importance of service and support during purchasing and implementation

Service and support are critical to Mr Nixon’s decision making process when purchasing new technology.

“Having support personnel who I can call mates is a huge advantage,” said Mr Nixon.

“We were the first in Australia to commercially fly this type of drone and the Aptella team has been there to support us along the way,” said Mr Nixon.

“The responsive, proactive and friendly support we receive is critical when we work in a deadline and output driven industry.

“After 30 hours of airtime in less than 3 months, the Trinity has been reliable and robust. It is also majestic to watch in the sky! I would encourage larger scale sites to look closely at this technology,” added Mr Nixon.

About Fyfe

Fyfe is a national consultancy with over 35 years experience in delivering comprehensive and integrated services to clients across a broad range of industry sectors. The combination of in-house measurement and design enables Fyfe to streamline the delivery of efficient outcomes for its clients.

Fyfe’s services can be summarised by four main disciplines areas: Engineering, environment, planning and survey.

Fyfe’s NSW office is survey based, specialising in tailored solutions for its clients. Fyfe has three Registered Mine Surveyors and two Registered Land Surveyors along with project surveyors, drafters and admin.

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