Australian drone startup AirSeed Technologies, which has embarked on a groundbreaking climate change initiative to plant 100 million trees by 2024, has found a new partner to improve its seed pod delivery system.
British engineering and smart tech firm CAL International says it was approached by AirSeed cofounder Andrew Walker to assist in refining the planting systems for their drone technology. The mission brief was to take AirSeed’s existing delivery system and refine the design of the user interface and manufacturability of the seed pod delivery system.
The AirSeed drone, which uses artificial and data intelligence, is a payload and delivery system that identifies and locates designated target areas with GPS coordinates and then fires carbon pods onto the ground at the rate of two per second. These carbon pods are then pinpointed on the mapping system in line with the flight trajectory, which also considers wind variables and conditions on the day of planting. This allows the drone to return on a reconnaissance flight via the same route to identify and map tree growth.
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All in all, AirSeed’s aerial platform is 80% cheaper than current planting methods and 25 times faster than manual planting methods.
And now, as a result of the collaboration between CAL and AirSeed, each tree-planting drone can now deliver two pods per second over a designated area.
Up to 40,000 pods can be planted in a day in this manner, CAL International founder and engineer Cliff Kirby explains. Here’s Kirby:
When AirSeed explained what they hoped to achieve, it was a challenge that we were delighted to take on. The huge significance and impact that this innovation can bring in the fight against climate change is truly global. Together with AirSeed based in Australia and South Africa and CAL based in the UK, this is a global collaboration and the very definition of the art of the possible. Through rapid automation and scale of the process, [the drone] can cover and penetrate a much wider geographical area.
AirSeed cofounder Andrew Walker adds:
Working with CAL, they have managed to take an existing delivery system design and turn it into a unique pod delivery mechanism. The design and engineering that has gone into the aerial platform from CAL also mean we can produce a great number of AirSeed aerial platforms and deploy these into the field quicker to speed up the process of reforestation which will help us in a race against time to mitigate climate change.
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