Announcing LIFT Forest: An eVTOL AI Project in Forest Analytics

Announcing LIFT Forest: An eVTOL AI Project in Forest Analytics

Announcing LIFT Forest: An eVTOL AI Project in Forest Analytics 1938 1300 Irnas

We’re excited to announce a new project that marks a significant leap in forest monitoring technology: LIFT Forest – eVTOL AI, Analytics of Forest Biomass. This enables unparalleled data collection and measurement of biomass for governments, forestry departments and forest owners alike. 

Overview of the Project

LIFT Forest is born from the joint efforts of Flycom Technologies, C-Astral, and IRNAS. At its core, this project harnesses the potential of eVTOL (electric Vertical Take-Off and Landing) unmanned aircraft, a marvel of Slovenian expertise. By integrating advanced LiDAR with machine learning, we’re setting new standards in data collection and analysis.

Advancements over Traditional Methods

Traditional forest monitoring methods fall short in various aspects. The eVTOL AI project is our comprehensive solution to these challenges. By employing an unmanned aerial system equipped with 3D sensors and AI, we’re revolutionizing how we gather and process forest data.Our approach is innovative. The eVTOL drone technology excels in navigating complex terrains, offering a more eco-friendly solution than helicopters or planes. The fusion of 3D LiDAR and RGB sensors enables high-resolution data capture, moving beyond the constraints of 2D imaging. 

Advanced docking station enables standalone operation of the system, allowing for continuous data collection over longer periods of time with minimal on-site man-power.

On-site deployed AI enabled Dendrometer sensors on specific trees measure the growth and conditions in real-time, offering an input to the captured data to contextualize it in-between the aerial scans of a particular region. Completing this technological marvel is the use of AI for automatic and intricate data processing, creating a comprehensive digital twin of forest areas.

Advanced robotized docking station

IRNAS harnesses its expertise in connected systems, IoT, machine learning, and mechanical engineering to design a transportable docking platform. 

This is a unique solution, specifically tailored to support large-sized eVTOL vehicles. It seamlessly manages the docking and charging procedures, while simultaneously capturing LIDAR data. This data is then transmitted to the cloud, utilizing either satellite or 5G networks, for efficient and rapid processing.A critical aspect of this operation lies in the real-time communication between the drone and the docking station. This communication system is vital, as it relays essential information, such as weather conditions and precise landing coordinates. This docking station is a key component in unlocking the potential for entirely automated drone flying operations in designated regions

Funding and Support for the Project

The LIFT Forest project is being realized thanks to the support of a Public Call for Recovery and Resilience with Pilot-Demonstration Project. This initiative is spearheaded by SPIRIT (the Public Agency of the Republic of Slovenia for the Promotion of Investment, Entrepreneurship, and Internationalization)The financial resources for this public call are provided by the European Union, under the Recovery and Resilience Facility. 

Project Demonstration and Timeline

We’re set to demonstrate this technology in Maribor and expected to conclude by February 28, 2025.

The Consortium Partners

  • Flycom Technologies: Recognized as Slovenia’s premier provider of air and mobile remote sensing services and products, Flycom Technologies brings its expert management of geospatial data to this project.
  • C-Astral: A global leader in the production of small fixed-wing unmanned aerial systems, C-Astral contributes its robust product testing system, ensuring reliability under diverse weather and topographical conditions.
  • IRNAS: Specializing in developing robust and cost-effective IoT solutions, IRNAS plays a crucial role in adapting these technologies for industrial and challenging environments.

Closing Remarks

The Lift Forest project is more than just a technological advancement; it’s a step towards a sustainable and precise future in forest management. Stay tuned, as we’ll be sharing more exciting details in the upcoming months.

LIFT Forest received co-founding within the framework of the public call for recovery and resilience with pilot-demonstration projects

PROJECT NAME: LIFT Forest – eVTOL AI Analysis of Forest Biomass

PROJECT PARTNERS:

Flycom Technologies Ltd.

C-Astral Ltd.

Irnas Ltd.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION:

LIFT Forest – eVTOL AI Analysis of Forest Biomass is an application that combines advanced technologies to address the issue of forest area management, forest inventory, and biomass status identification. The project involves the development and integration of advanced hardware (LiDAR and RGB 3D sensors, and the construction of a base station for landing an autonomous unmanned aerial vehicle) as well as the application of machine learning models to provide an accurate digital twin of the forest, adding value for forest managers and the economy.

PURPOSE AND OBJECTIVES:

The purpose of the project is to establish an energy-efficient method for determining the inventory and status of biomass in forests, enabling the acquisition of precise high-resolution data not attainable with current methods and is efficient and scalable. Project objectives: Developed forest biomass inventory, rechargeable base station, user interface for displaying 2D and 3D digital twins.

PROJECT START DATE: March 1, 2023

PROJECT END DATE: February 28, 2025

EXPECTED TOTAL FINANCIAL VALUE: EUR 1,665,638.46

EXPECTED FINANCIAL SUPPORT: EUR 989,793.08

The investment is part of the measures in the Slovenian Recovery and Resilience Plan, funded through the “NextGenerationEU” mechanism. To read more about the Slovenian Recovery and Resilience Plan, visit: https://www.gov.si/zbirke/projekti-in-programi/nacrt-za-okrevanje-in-odpornost

For more information on EU funding, visit: https://evropskasredstva.si/