top of page
  • Writer's pictureJohn Woodman

What does a drone actually do?

Hello again from John,

In my last few blog posts, I was talking about what is required to have a company operate legally, and how to obtain the pilot licence.

Once you have those, you can start operating commercially. So, what do you do to generate income?

Flying a drone by itself is not something you would normally be paid for. There are those amazing drone swarm light shows, but those are controlled by AI…

A drone is a tool to carry a payload. In the same way that your car transports you to the office, the drone transports the payload. You still need to work at the office (while the boss is looking anyway), and the payload is there to collect data.

Generally, the payload will be a camera of some kind; but could also be thermal sensors, LiDAR sensors, multi-spectral sensors, hyper-spectral sensors, gas detectors, radiation detectors, ground penetrating radar, and more.

These sensors collect data in various forms. This data, the interpretation of the data, and how the data is presented to the client is how we actually make a drone company commercially viable.

There are other payloads that the drone can carry. The most widely used is herbicide or pesticide to spray crops. Crop spraying by drone allows highly targeted spraying, or simply spraying areas too dangerous for a manned aircraft. Drones are also used to sow seeds in reforestation programs.

A very interesting payload is an item for delivery. Zipline,, has been doing fantastic work delivering medication and blood in several African countries.

There has even been a delivery of organs for transplant in the USA.

If you are thinking about entering the commercial drone sector, think about what you can offer. Can you offer something unique? Can you add drones to your existing product offering, or use it to support your offering? Can you transfer existing skills into a drone operation?

At UAV Inspection, we come from an inspection background in the oil and gas industry. We hold certifications from the American Petroleum Institute and we believe that this puts us in a unique position, where we can inspect and report on your industrial plant.

Till next time, fly safe,

Recent Posts

See All


bottom of page