Drones, or unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs), represent a powerful, cost-efficient design and surveillance tool for sites, and for client and public consultation. This new technical information note aims to help landscape professionals understand the use of UAVs within landscape and systems, and the procurement of UAV services.

Image courtesy of © National Trust / Mike Calnan (see www.topographica.co.uk)

Drones, or unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs), are widely available and have a direct application to landscape, urban design, and planning. They provide innovative survey possibilities: operating in a ‘hover space’ between human scales of landscape observation and low-flying light aircraft, they can provide near-range visual information to complement other sensory data sets.

Drones represent a powerful, cost-efficient design and surveillance tool for sites, and for client and public consultation, by providing new perspectives on spatial layout, landscape, and urban landscape conditions, as well as data capture.

Read TIN 02/2022: Drones in Landscape Practice

This technical information note aims to help landscape professionals understand the use of UAVs within landscape and systems, and the procurement of UAV services, with particular focus on drone operations and uses for deployment in UK airspace. Although the TIN does include some detail for cautionary purposes, it is not to be taken as guidance; effort has only been made to ensure its accuracy at the time of publication.

(Read more: LI technical notes and standards.)

Mike Shilton, Chair of the LI Digital Practice Group, commented: ‘This edition builds on the previous technical note by providing practical examples of how drones are currently being used and demonstrating their potential to transform how we survey, analyse, and model landscapes in the future. This represents a timely update on the use of drones within landscape, but it is a rapidly changing technology – and we welcome feedback and further examples of their use from practitioners or other third parties.’

The LI competency framework recognises the significance of digital technologies in landscape practice. This includes professional competencies such as ‘digital practice’ and ‘data management’, and links to a range of core and additional competencies, including ‘digital technologies’.

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