Companies in a wide variety of industries are quickly adopting the latest drone technologies to more easily capture data related to industrial processes.
The Harvard Business Review states that approximately 60% of commercial drone use is still for videography/photography purposes, but new high-value industrial applications are becomingly increasingly common.
High-value drone usage has already become commonplace in agriculture, construction, search and rescue, and oil/gas industries. The oil and gas industry, in particular, greatly benefits from the low cost and effectiveness of commercial drones.
Drone video is used by oil companies to capture aerial footage of refineries and pipelines. It’s becoming essential for inspections, emissions monitoring, and damage detection.
Simply put, drone video is changing the face of the oil and gas industry. Here’s everything you need to know about using drones for shooting oil company videos, including the 4 best drones for the job.
How Drones Are Used for Oil Company Videos
The industrial applications for drones are constantly expanding. Oil and gas applications are at the forefront of these innovative uses for non-military drones.
According to Sky-Futures, a drone deployment company, inspection technology is one of the most exciting uses of drones for oil companies. Real-time aerial footage from drones speeds up inspections without risking human lives in the process.
Oil companies also use drone videos for damage detection. During inspections, drones outfitted with a variety of cameras and sensors can spot damages before they become a major problem.
Yet another use of drone video for oil companies is to monitor gas emissions. This is particularly useful over large areas that are difficult to monitor otherwise. Spotting a leak in its early stages allows the problem to be solved before it becomes a big issue.
Though inspection, detection, and monitoring are currently the top uses of drones for oil companies, several other applications are sure to become more common in the future.
Chief among these exciting future applications of drone video are exploring new sites, remote mapping, and scouting.
Benefits of Drones for Oil Company Videos
The benefits of using drones for inspection, damage detection, monitoring, exploration, and mapping for oil companies are numerous. The top benefits to keep in mind include:
- Affordable – Drones are much cheaper to operate than the helicopters or planes previously used for oil and gas applications.
- Safe – Human inspection of pipelines, flare stacks, and offshore oil platforms can be very dangerous. Using drones instead means the only human involved is the one operating the drone.
- Quick – A drone can accomplish inspection and monitoring tasks far quicker than a helicopter, plane, or human.
- Versatile – Drones can be outfitted with a variety of cameras and sensors to accomplish a nearly endless number of tasks for oil companies.
- Available – A drone is ready to go at the drop of a hat.
Best Drones for Oil Company Videos
Of course, the best drone for your oil company videos depends upon your specific needs and preferences. Certain drones excel at certain applications.
With that said, the 4 drones below are the absolute best of the best. One of them is sure to be exactly what you need for shooting your oil company videos.
DJI Mavic Pro
The DJI Mavic Pro is one of the best drones for shooting oil company videos, particularly those used for video inspection applications.
The smallest of DJI’s offerings, the Mavic Pro combines a 4K stabilized camera, incredible performance, and a variety of intelligent flight modes into a single package.
The drone’s intelligent flight modes are of particular interest to oil companies. GPS-enabled autonomous flight allows the craft to take aerial footage while hovering in a precise location.
Another flight mode worth mentioning is “tripod mode.” It reduces top speed to only 2.2 mph and increases controller sensitivity. It’s perfect for performing indoor inspections in very close quarters.
This video shows the DJI Mavic Pro inspecting a roof.
DJI Phantom 4 Pro
The DJI Phantom 4 Pro takes the extremely popular Phantom 4 drone and adds even more top-notch features to it.
Those most interesting to the oil and gas industry are undoubtedly its high-quality camera and precise autonomous flight modes. The camera has a 1-inch 20MP CMOS sensor and shoots 4K HD video.
5-direction obstacle sensing means this drone also has one of the best obstacle avoidance systems on the market. It automatically avoids obstacles while traveling in all directions. All other DJI drones are only capable of doing this while moving forwards.
The Phantom 4 Pro also features excellent battery life. A longer flight time allows for longer and more thorough oil industry inspections and monitoring missions.
This video shows the DJI Phantom 4 Pro’s intelligent flight modes.
DJI Phantom 4
Though it doesn’t have all of the updated features of the Phantom 4 Pro, the DJI Phantom 4 is still a top-notch drone for shooting oil company videos. It boasts a high-performance camera that shoots video in 4K at 30fps. The integrated 3-axis gimbal ensures clear, stable footage.
Multiple flight modes enable you to use the Phantom 4 for numerous applications. Visual tracking, tap to fly, and obstacle avoidance are key features for those using the drone for inspection applications.
This video provides a thorough review of the DJI Phantom 4.
DJI Inspire 2
The DJI Inspire 2 is designed with professional filmmaking in mind. Many of the same qualities filmmakers look for in a drone also benefit those using drones for industrial applications, like shooting oil company videos.
The most important feature of the Inspire 2 is its camera. It captures incredible 5.2K video at a 4.2Gbps bitrate. 25 minutes of flight time enables you to take your time while using this drone.
Another exciting feature of the Inspire 2 is its top speed. It’s currently DJI’s fastest drone with a 67mph top speed.
Though most oil companies shoot video at slow speeds while performing inspections, this top speed might be beneficial while monitoring and inspecting large areas.
This video gives you an in-the-field look at the DJI Inspire 2.
The benefits of using a drone to shoot oil company videos are hard to pass over. To ensure you make the most of them, it’s important to invest in a top-quality drone. Any of the 4 drones outlined above are sure to help you capture the footage you need for effective inspection and monitoring of gas and oil sites.