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Dwyka Mining Services Showcases Cutting-Edge Drone Technology at FNB Stadium



In an event not commonly associated with the FNB Stadium in Johannesburg, Dwyka Mining Services brought together industry experts from around the globe to showcase innovative drone solutions poised to revolutionize the mining industry. This gathering underscored the pivotal role of drone technology in enhancing safety, health, and environmental conditions in mining operations, aligning with Dwyka’s mission to build the “digital mine of the future.”

Skydio: Advancing 3D Mapping and Remote Operations

The event kicked off with a demonstration by Skydio, a leading name in commercial drone applications. Skydio’s drones are renowned for their advanced capabilities in 3D mapping, a feature highlighted during the showcase. Remarkably, the demonstration included the remote control of a drone located in California, over 16,000 kilometers away, showcasing the company’s prowess in long-distance operations.

Skydio drones are equipped with docking stations and can be fully automated, enabling scheduled inspections. This automation allows the drones to follow pre-programmed flight paths and capture consistent images, facilitating automated analysis and monitoring of asset condition changes over time. This capability is particularly beneficial for routine inspections in mining operations, where consistency and accuracy are paramount.

Wingtra: Precision Agriculture and Surveying Solutions

Next on the agenda was Switzerland-based Wingtra, introducing the WingtraOne, a tail-sitting vertical take-off and landing unmanned aerial vehicle (VTOL UAV). The WingtraOne, powered by two electric motors, is designed for precision agriculture, surveying, and light payload delivery to remote areas. Despite the restrictions that prevented a live flight demonstration at the stadium, the potential applications of the WingtraOne in surveying and agriculture were clearly communicated.

Boston Dynamics’ Spot and Emesent’s Hovermap: Enhancing Data Collection

The event concluded with an introduction to two Boston Dynamics robots named Spot, one of which was equipped with Emesent’s Hovermap. Hovermap utilizes Lidar sensing technology to produce high-density point clouds with exceptional coverage, boasting a sensing range of up to 300 meters and the ability to capture over a million points per second. This technology provides detailed and accurate data across wide areas, crucial for comprehensive site analysis.


Emesent also demonstrated a drone equipped with Hovermap, capable of autonomously navigating to designated points and maneuvering through obstacles with minimal human intervention. This autonomous navigation capability is particularly valuable in mining operations, where inspecting underground locations can be hazardous. By deploying a drone instead of a human, mining operations can significantly reduce risk and enhance safety.

Transforming Mining Operations

The applications of these advanced drone technologies in mining are profound. For instance, inspecting dangerous or hard-to-reach areas underground can now be performed by drones, minimizing the need for human presence in potentially unsafe conditions. This not only enhances safety but also improves the efficiency and accuracy of inspections, leading to better-informed decision-making in mining operations.

Dwyka Mining Services’ event at FNB Stadium highlighted the transformative potential of drone technology in the mining industry. By leveraging cutting-edge solutions from companies like Skydio, Wingtra, and Boston Dynamics, Dwyka is paving the way for a safer, more efficient, and environmentally conscious mining future.

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