Success Stories #002 - Flash Forest



Overview


In this issue of Hammer's success stories, we spoke to Greg Matthew Crossley from Flash Forest, an innovative drone-based reforestation startup based in Canada, using Hammer for the past 6 months.


Flash Forest is a Canadian reforestation company that uses UAV technology, automation and ecological science to regenerate ecosystems on a global scale.


They plant species natural to our locations with high sequestration rates. Their technology maps out the best planting locations and averages a planting density of 1,000 to 2,000 trees per hectare. At full capacity, they aim to plant 100,000 seed pods per day under the supervision of two UAV operators.


The Interview


Q. What specific problem are you solving with drones?

"According to the International Panel on Climate Change, we have 10 years to prevent catastrophic run-away effects of climate change on our species, civilization, and the species that we cohabit this planet with. In 2018, 34 billion tons of CO2 was released by humans. This has been increasing since pre-industrial times and surpasses the earth’s natural ability to absorb it.


Planting trees is currently the fastest and cheapest way to sequester carbon. With billions of trees planted each year, we can tip the scales on the climate crisis. With that in mind, we're automating reforestation by using drones to plant trees."


Q. Could you describe the services you currently offer and to whom?

"We offer turn-key reforestation services: aerial surveys, low-cost automated planting and drone-based growth monitoring. Our customers are typically governments, NG0s, private land owners and corporations with CSR interests."

Q. What drones and cameras do you currently operate?

"We primarily use DJI drones: the Phantom 4 Pro V2, the Matrice 600 Pro and the Matrice 300 RTK, with custom software and hardware for planning and planting."


Flash Forest with their custom M600 drone ready to plant seed pods


Q. What's been your most challenging drone mission?

"Our first large-scale automated planting in the Spring of 2020 in British Columbia, Canada. There were a lot new technologies all coming together at the same time!"

Q. What made you switch to Hammer?

"We were looking for a software partner to help us automate our tree planting missions. Hammer made it easy for us to airdrop our custom flightpath files onto the iOS devices connected to our pilots' remotes. So far, we're very pleased with the ver­sat­il­ity of this app and how help­ful the Ham­mer team has been in our im­ple­ment­a­tion."

Q. What missions do you typically fly with Hammer?


"Mapping, planting and surveying."

Q. What's the next big thing for your organisation?


"Scale! We're working on improving our processes and our yield so that we can help more organizations and land owners re-establish biodiverse ecosystems. At full capacity, we aim to plant 100,000 seed pods per day under the supervision of two UAV operators."

Q. How do you see the drone industry evolving?

"We've been impressed by the speed at which the industry has made drones affordable and adaptable."


Closing Thoughts


We're grateful to Flash Forest for sharing their story and look forward to supporting their operations into the future with adaptive flight automation. Together we believe that innovative drone applications combined with flight automation will shape the future of the commercial drone industry.


If you’d like to learn more about Hammer, please visit https://hammermissions.com or get in touch with us at team@hammermissions.com.


We look forward to hearing from you.


- The Hammer Team

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