UK firms partner on China-free drone platforms

By Luke Geiver | February 26, 2020

Workswell, a UK-based designer and manufacturer of stationary, R&D and UAV thermal imaging cameras, solutions and systems, is renewing its partnership with Acecore Technologies, a market leading designer and manufacturer of unmanned aircraft systems (UAS) from The Netherlands. As part of the announcement renewal, the companies have pointed to the origin of their designs, parts and platforms.

“The addition of the European hand-made Acecore drones enabled Workswell to offer a 100 percent China-free alternative for customers globally,” Workswell’s team said.

European-made UAV packages

“Acecore have been working with Workswell infrared cameras ever since we recognized the thermal inspection industry for power lines, solar panels, wind turbines etc. Integrating the first generation WIRIS dual sensor camera as a payload option for our drones enabled Acecore to deliver a complete solution.” said Youri van Helden, marketing manager at Acecore. “Revamping the partnership allows us to work even more closely together and take advantage of Workswell’s extended product range,” he added.

“Having a thermal camera payload without a robust, stable and professional UAV will not satisfy the customer’s needs. Workswell & Acecore’s partnership creates end-to-end UAV systems including all elements needed for professional work such as drone itself, thermal payload, gimbal, controller, RTK etc. for any kind of application”, said Adam Svestka, head of global business development in Workswell. “The customer gets the full package: a plug & play solution to carry out their job accurately, fast and without additional accessories or software” Svestka added.

In order to provide the global market with a European-made alternative to existing drone and camera solutions, the companies have been working together to align their strategies. Acecore have designed a dedicated UAS for each of the Workswell infrared cameras, including the GIS320 gas detection camera and the dual sensor WIRIS Security. The bundles include, not just a drone and a camera, all peripherals such as the gimbal, transmitter and video link. Customers can purchase these ready-to-fly bundles from Acecore as well as Workswell sales points, including official distributors.

Being a dedicated infrared camera system developer, Workswell have been looking for a competent universal drone platform to integrate its cameras with. DJI drones such as the M600 series have been filling this spot until now.”

Workswell infrared cameras are to be considered top-of-the-line, offering features such as 1280 x 1024 px super resolution, up to 10x optical zoom and a radiometric temperature measuring range of up to 1.500°C. Controlling the cameras’ features can be done—from the ground—using Workswell’s WIRIS OS operating system which includes many functionalities for security and measuring applications, extending the camera’s metrological capabilities. All the UAV-series cameras are equipped with WIRIS OS for an easy and user-friendly experience.

Acecore uses the highest quality materials to design and build the Neo and Zoe drones. Both UAVs were designed to perform as a robust and versatile solution for many applications, including cinematography, inspection, aerial surveying and security. Their lightweight carbon fiber frames and advanced motors allow users to implement payloads of up to 9kg with a maximum takeoff weight of <25kg. To optimize PPK efforts, Acecore’s Neo and Zoe drones come fitted with a smart module that puts the GPS and drone flight data directly on the collected images.