SkyBEAM™ (Building Envelope Asset Mapping) is a groundbreaking program that uses unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) equipped with high-definition (HD) and thermographic (infrared) cameras to locate buildings’ energy leaks, rooftop damage, deteriorating façades, safety issues and other potential problems. On April 18, 2016, SkyBEAM became the first UAV approved by the FAA for nighttime commercial drone operation in the United States.
SkyBEAM’s thermographic camera depicts temperature variations around a building that indicate various problems – such as poor window sealing or wet rooftop insulation – that can lead to significant capital expenses, increased operating costs, occupant discomfort and other issues.
SkyBEAM is available in the United States, as well as across Canada.
The safest way possible to find damaging wet insulation beneath the roof
Roofs typically undergo infrared scanning to detect wet insulation, which wastes energy, can cause structural problems and can be extremely expensive to repair. Wet roof insulation absorbs and retains more solar energy and heat than dry roof insulation. Therefore, infrared scanning is most effective when the sun is not warming the building and will not affect the scan. This typically means putting a crew on a roof at night, a dangerous situation despite safety precautions that Tremco Roofing puts in place.
SkyBEAM eliminates this danger. Highly-trained technicians operate the UAV safely from the ground. SkyBEAM scans the roof in a programmed pattern and takes hundreds of photographs, which are combined into a single, large image showing precisely where the wet insulation is located. Technicians can then safely mark these areas during the day for further action.
In addition, SkyBEAM’s HD camera can photograph other potential problems, such as the need for appropriate rooftop safety equipment.
Interactive reporting that clearly shows the building’s condition
SkyBEAM consolidates the infrared scanning and HD images into a comprehensive, interactive, easy-to-understand report that facility owners and managers, and technicians, access through a cloud-based application. The report clearly and accurately shows problem areas, helping decision makers determine their plan of action.
A virtual model of the building is created in 2D and 3D and can be viewed from any angle. The model allows users to overlay thermal images to their exact location on the building. Photographs, comments and other data can be added in real time through a tablet, even when technicians are on site, to ensure that work can be verified and that the report always has the latest information.
Data can also be transmitted down to those on the roof. Through geo-positioning, technicians can always see their exact location in relation to problem areas. As they walk across the roof, the scan moves with them so they can precisely locate where work needs to take place, minimizing disruption to the roof.
SkyBEAM is completely unique within the construction industry. With the visual evidence it gives decision makers of where their building is losing energy, especially from areas that were difficult to scan before, it can help improve their facility maintenance planning and budgeting; is the safest way to conduct night time infrared scanning; and is a huge benefit to field technicians who need to locate and repair rooftop damage.