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Osprey Aerial Imaging
“The need for more efficient, safer and less obtrusive methods of aerial line inspections is ever increasing.”



The Solution

Apex Helicopters provides a new perspective on comprehensive aerial line inspections. In partnership with Osprey Airborne Solutions, this complete service package provides geo-spatially oriented high resolution photography & data using a patented azimuth antenna array. Apex Helicopters is the exclusive service provider for this unique technology in North America. Aerial surveillance work can significantly aid power companies in identifying various defects that have the potential to disrupt electricity transmission or cause harm. Inspections with our system can be utilized in conjunction with:

  • Harmful Weather Events & Natural Disasters
  • New Construction & Maintenance Audits
  • Routine Proactive Inspection


System Features

All collected data is fully geo-located and able to be integrated into existing customer GIS systems and databases for analysis. The degree of accuracy when creating a work or maintenance plan is greatly increased:

  • Flightcrew Increased Situational Awareness
  • Automated Linking of Photos & Line Assets
  • Multiple Images - Look Angles Per Structure
  • Very High Resolution Asset Images (36 mp)
  • Secondary Wide Angle Contextual Image
  • Up to 1,000 Structures Per Day
  • Fault Reporting using Clients Fault Codes
  • Data is Provided per Customer Specifications

At the center of the innovation is a patented azimuth antenna array which provides the bearing of the camera system independent of the helicopter attitude or heading.




Flight Planning

Apex Helicopters use standardized procedures for the recording and provisioning of powerline data. All client data and known hazards are processed electronically into flight plans allowing for safe and efficient data capture.


Increased Safety Benefits

Current comprehensive inspection risks can be further mitigated by the following capabilities of the Apex / Osprey system:

  • Increased Stand-Off of up to 400 Feet AGL
  • Fly Above Translational Lift Airspeeds (30 kts)
  • Reduced Impact on Livestock
  • Reduced Public Noise Complaints
  • No Pressure on Flightcrew to Assess In-flight


Digital Map Data Output

Spatial data processors are then responsible for the collection and processing of files as well as the delivery of the finalized data set to the client for asset assessment. Completed service packages include:

  • Technical Support if Needed
  • MapWindow GIS Suite
  • Open Source GIS or KML Files
  • GPS Track Log
  • Roads
  • Localities
  • Other Customer Identified Features
  • Encoded Image Meta-Data
    • Time of Capture
    • Location of Camera (+/- 5m)
    • Location of Aircraft (+/- 5m)
    • Location of Asset
    • Bearing of Camera when Captured
    • (accurate to +/- 0.2 degrees)
    • Unique Image Name

Camera bearing is captured simultaneously with the image. This eliminates the wrong pole being scheduled for repair, a major risk with this type of project.

The high quality images allow the client inspectors to sit in the comfort and safety of their office and inspect the individual components of every pole in a fraction of the time. When a fault is detected an inspection report can be generated, along with a map to guide ground crews.