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New drone technology transforms ABPs asset management in partnership with PwC and Aerodyne

Associated British Ports (ABP), the UKs leading and best-connected port owner and operator, announced this week it has successfully embedded drone technology into their asset management practices and policies, following an 18 month program, reports abports.co.uk.

ABP utilised Price Waterhouse Coopers (PwC) specialist drone digital transformation team to support drone adoption in asset management, while Aerodyne Group, a DT3 (Drone Tech, Data Tech and Digital Transformation) solutions provider, was selected as the Port’s drone service provider.

ABP’s 21 ports and rail freight terminals around Britain offer marine, road and rail access to domestic and international markets, which include 54 miles of quay and 1.4 million square miles of covered storage.

ABP’s Group Director of Safety, Engineering and Marine, Mike McCartain, said, “We realised drones could offer significant value to our asset and property inspections, when using drone and data technology integrated with a secure cloud platform. They are safer, faster and more cost-effective, enabling us to optimise operations and reduce risks.”

He continued, “The cloud platform we’ve built with our partners offers our teams simple and intuitive access to the drone information, including the ability to build inspection reports in the browser, aligned to our existing asset management systems.” Adding, “This is a big step forward in ABP’s digital transformation.”

Development in the past 6 months has been focused on extensive site testing with Aerodyne across eight locations in the UK. Analysis and data collection from the flights has demonstrated considerable cost saving and benefits, where operations were safer, 25% more cost effective and took 55% less time compared to traditional methods for selected assets.

Founder and Group CEO, Aerodyne Group, Kamarul A Muhamed, commented,“We are committed to provide consistent quality services while complying to established regulations and standards.” He continued, “Globally, our clients have benefited from optimised management of their critical assets and infrastructure leveraging on our solutions.”

In parallel, ABP worked with Aerodyne and PwC to build a cutting-edge drone visual asset management system which enables its teams to view asset condition dashboards, management information and build inspection reports, with only a browser required for access.

ABP’s next project is the development of an in-house drone capability to complement the Aerodyne solutions and it has just retained PwC’s specialist drone team to assist with this critical implementation.

Steve Russell, a Partner at PwC, elaborated, “It can be complex to implement drone technology and our team of digital transformation experts have supported ABP ensuring a systematic and low risk approach to making technology work for their business.  ABP chose Aerodyne Group after our previous work with them, noting their leading cloud software platform, local capability and significant global scale, with more than 300,000 infrastructure assets across 25 countries.”

PwC has a network of firms in 157 countries with over 276,000 employees, whilst Aerodyne’s team of over 400 drone professionals have carried out over 110,000 flight operations and surveyed in excess of 100,000 km of power infrastructure.

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