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Geofencing in Drone Operations

Updated: Feb 16, 2022

Contributed by Capt Yash Patel



Geofencing in Drone Operations

Over the last few years, drone mapping technology has progressed dramatically, giving us a plethora of sophisticated systems and resources that we are increasingly using. Geofencing is one of them. It is a tool that enables a virtual relationship to be established with physical locations in the offline world.

A geofence is essentially a virtual fence – also known as a perimeter – that surrounds a physical location. As a result, something occurs when an entity enters or attempts to exit this field (perimeter).

Imagine geofencing as a fence around your house to get a better understanding of the technology. For example, when someone enters your yard, an alarm triggered by the technology can be activated.

Geofencing may be used to ‘fence off' a critical or limited area for drones and this is to be done by the regulator by identifying the areas where drones cannot fly and then that map has to be implemented by UTM providers in their dashboard (e.ga Airports, parliament buildings, nuclear facility and other sensitive areas.). It can also be used to encircle a drone on a specific mission, such as mapping an agricultural area.


The main advantage of geofencing is that it does not necessitate the construction of any physical structures, which is essential for drones that can fly over real-world fences. Instead, it is a digital structure built on top of a map and a code that is defined by a single person. As a result, it is extremely adaptable and can be fully customized to improve positioning accuracy.


For those worried about drone flight routes, geofencing is now accessible on a variety of levels. Drone manufacturers also have geofenced zones to ensure that drone pilots do not fly into restricted areas like nuclear power plants or hospitals, or temporarily sensitive areas like forest fires or stadium events.


Geofencing is another option that some drone solution providers provide. Clients can create their own custom geofence by entering four points on a map, or defining a radius or by defining a height within the app, which prevents the drone from leaving the defined area.


Geofencing is a natural extension of using drones to provide valuable services while reducing the friction with which they communicate in our world, despite the fact that it is a technology that many people are still unfamiliar with.


Expect to see geofencing used in a growing number of applications and environments as drones become more sophisticated.


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