For example, e-commerce giant Amazon is currently testing Amazon Prime Air, which will deliver packages to customers via drones. Although it sounds like something from a science fiction movie, the idea has captured the imagination of the media, consumers and corporate executives.
At Domtar, we recently started using drone solutions at our Ashdown Mill in Arkansas.
Domtar’s Ashdown Mill uses two DJI Phantom 4 Pro Drones to aid in its forestry operations.
Doug Teale is the sustainability manager at the Ashdown Mill, which produces uncoated paper and premium fluff pulp used in products such as diapers. Teale first learned about drone solutions at a 2015 forestry conference, and he knew immediately that drones could make Domtar’s work faster, safer and more efficient.
“The use of drones is absolutely the biggest advance I’ve seen in this business in a long time,” says Teale. “They improve our efficiency and the accuracy of our calculations, they save us time, and they keep all of our foresters safer. The impact has been tremendous, so we’re excited to share best practices with others across the Domtar network and potentially expand the use of drones throughout other facilities.”
Here are three ways drone solutions are changing forestry.
1. Drone Solutions Monitor Forest Health
Ashdown Mill began using drones 2016. Today, Domtar colleagues use two drones to monitor local forests for diseased trees or invasive species. The ips beetle, also known as the engraver beetle, is a common pest that can burrow under bark and tunnel through pine and spruce trees, causing severe damage. Using drone solutions, foresters can quickly check for infestations. What used to take half a day is now accomplished in just 20 minutes.