Horizon Imaging was recently contacted by a researcher at the University of Sussex who is involved in a project looking at the feasibility of using UAVs (Unmanned Aerial Vehicles) to automatically detect the presence of intruders on long-distance buried oil and gas pipelines. 
Horizon Imaging was recently contacted by a researcher at the University of Sussex who is involved in a project looking at the feasibility of using UAVs (Unmanned Aerial Vehicles) to automatically detect the presence of intruders on long-distance buried oil and gas pipelines. 
A screengrab from one of the aerial videos showing two 'targets' on a path.
A screengrab from one of the aerial videos showing two 'targets' on a path. Click to enlarge. 
One of Skyhook's aerial photography platforms was used to capture the aerial videos.
One of Skyhook's aerial photography platforms was used to capture the aerial videos. Click to enlarge. 
Horizon Imaging worked together with Skyhook to capture a set of aerial videos of various objects on a sandy path – either stationary or moving around. Part of the research project involves the creation of image processing algorithms which, as well as stitching images together to produce a single mosaic of the entire pipeline, will also be used to detect any changes or disturbances along the length of the pipeline. To simulate this we positioned a car and a person on the path, drove a car up and down the path, and had a person walk up and down the path – all whilst being filmed from one of our unmanned helicopters flying overhead. 
 
Automated aerial surveillance of this nature has the potential to revolutionise the protection of remote and long-distance pipelines, and it felt great to be part of the research into this labour-saving and potentially life-saving application of UAVs. 
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