A SCOTTISH oil services company has won a contract for the provision of drone surveys for a multi-national network and telecomms company.

Sky-Futures Partners, part of Aberdeen-based ICR, has been awarded a four-year global framework contract to carry out drone-based site surveys by the un-named Scandinavian company.

It will be on a large scale, using operational bases in the US, Europe, Middle East and South East Asia, as well as leveraging its ongoing experience conducting drone-based operations in 31 countries.

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The site survey service forms part of the global network build plan supporting the rapid growth in the development of the network. As the network grows, so will the number of structures and therefore the requirement for such site surveys, it said.

Chris Blackford, Sky-Futures chief executive, said: “Traditionally, conducting cell site surveys requires a team with several different skill sets and the need to climb the towers. With the introduction of drones, site surveys can now be completed with a much smaller team, collecting high quality data more quickly and more safely.”

Once the data has been collected, Sky-Futures will upload the information into artificial intelligence-enabled cloud software to support the global network build programme. Engineers can then make decisions using the 3D model tower data from a remote desktop without having to incur unnecessary site visits. It supports enhanced health and safety and helps reduce costs through improved efficiencies of the global network build programme.

Sky-Futures is working with tower owners and operators to provide both site surveys and integrity inspections.

It said maintaining the condition of the structures is crucial to ensuring smooth operations and reducing downtime risk.