December 7, 2022

Corning Incorporated is moving into the drone industry, selling its latest hyperspectral sensor in partnership with leading drone platform provider PrecisionHawk. In doing so, PrecisionHawk gets at least a temporary lead over competitors in delivering a high level of drone imaging data intelligence.

Historically, low-altitude data collection using hyperspectral sensors has been difficult to achieve because of operational complexities. This partnership makes it possible for novice users to properly and effectively collect high-resolution hyperspectral data using a PrecisionHawk drone package, which includes a drone coupled with processing and analytics software.

This integration will lay the groundwork for creating extensive data libraries that hone in on spectral bands to generate extremely tailored applications across enterprise verticals like agriculture, mining and energy. For example, pinpointing specific diseases in an agricultural field.

PrecisionHawk announced it will collaborate with Corning Incorporated (NYSE: GLW) to sell the Corning microHSI 410-SHARK hyperspectral camera coupled with PrecisionHawk’s platform for collection and analysis of drone data. The sensor is capable of on-board processing which produces calibrated, geo-referenced hyper-cubes post flight.

The massive research potential brought to light by these low-altitude remote sensing capabilities will allow for the creation of new spectral libraries that can generate extremely tailored applications across enterprise verticals including agriculture, mining, construction, energy, and insurance industries.

“Historically, low-altitude data collection using hyperspectral sensors has been very difficult to achieve due to operational complexities,” said Richard Zacaroli, commercial business development manager, Hyperspectral Imaging Products, Corning Incorporated. “Due to the integration between Corning’s revolutionary sensors and PrecisionHawk’s drone and data suite, it’s now possible for novice users to properly and effectively collect high-resolution hyperspectral data.”

The microHSI 410-SHARK visible to near-infrared (VNIR) hyperspectral imager is equipped with 154 spectral bands and a spectral range of 400-1,000 nanometers.

The sensor can be mounted on several of PrecisionHawk’s drone platforms for simplified data collection, which can be purchased starting at $7,100.

“Hyperspectral imagery is a tremendously rich dataset that helps researchers pick up vital information over a detailed spectrum for analysis,” said Thomas Haun, senior vice president of Partnerships at PrecisionHawk. “With Corning’s 154-band hyperspectral product, researchers can obtain and create a wide variety of spectral maps to hone in on specific problems the customer is trying to solve that would otherwise not be identifiable with visual or multispectral sensors.”

The sensor joins PrecisionHawk’s robust sensor line and will be offered as an optional add-on to drone data packages featuring DJI’S M100 and M600, which are integrated with PrecisionHawk’s flight planning, processing and analysis tools. At low altitudes, data obtained through the microHSI™ 410-SHARK creates high-resolution maps not available through traditional collection methodologies.

PrecisionHawk and Corning’s combined offering puts the power of advanced science into a high- performance and cost-effective package that could drive the future of commercial drones.

PercisionHawk is the first drone firm to adopt and integrate the Corning sensor; but it is unlikely to the the only one.

Frank Schroth

Frank Schroth is editor in chief of DroneLife, the authoritative source for news and analysis on the drone industry: it’s people, products, trends, and events.
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