Dutch drone first to map pristine national park in half a century

Marlyn provides crucial data for endangered wildlife research

Delft, 31th Jan 2018 

The interior region of Silhouette is a national park, with some of the richest biodiversity in the entire Indian Ocean. It is also home to several, critically endangered, plants and animals. In order to keep track of the different species on the island and gain insights into the unique ecosystem, an up-to-date map is an essential tool. However, this was not possible for half a century due to its rough environment with mountaintops up to 740m and its remote location. Our hybrid mapping drone Marlyn has enabled cartography professional TFC International to map this tropical island paradise, kicking off the project for mapping the entire Silhouette national park with great detail. These flights prove again that Marlyn is capable of mapping under these extreme conditions.

“The outdated and inaccurate map is our only means of planning and guiding expeditions. During our trips, we can encounter cliffs or impenetrable areas that are not shown on the current map, forcing us to abort the mission prematurely”, conservation officer at the Island Conservation Society, François Baguette explains. He goes on: “The high-resolution photographs and maps made by Marlyn will help us to better understand this area and will enable us to better plan our expeditions, saving us a lot of time and valuable manpower.”

“With this project, we are seamlessly pursuing the vision of our company: empowering professionals across industries to effortlessly gather geospatial data from the sky, enabling them to make more informed decisions, more efficiently and effectively”, mentions Sander Hulsman, CEO of ATMOS UAV. He adds “Where all other hybrid drones quit, Marlyn continues. Her ability to withstand winds up to 6Bft during all phases of the flight from take-off to cruise and landing makes her a truly unique professional mapping tool that proved to be essential for this project. We are very proud that TFC International selected our flagship model Marlyn for this beautiful and challenging project.”

As Marlyn has what it takes to map this island given the extreme conditions, I am confident she is capable of mapping any other project all over the world.

The combination of having only a handful of small take-off points in combination with the mountains, ever-present wind and heat makes mapping the Silhouette island a big challenge. Conventional drones that fly like helicopters lack the endurance and fixed-wing drones need a large empty space to take-off and land which is not available. “When we found out about Marlyn’s unique ability to take-off and land vertically under windy conditions combined with a high flight autonomy, we knew this is exactly the drone we needed for this wonderful project”,  says Jean-François Rossignol, director of TFC International. He continues: “As Marlyn has what it takes to map this island given the extreme conditions, I am confident she is capable of mapping any other project all over the world.”

About ATMOS UAV

Atmos UAV is a Delft (NL) based company specialised in the design and production of high-end aerial surveying and data collection systems. With our drones, we are empowering professionals across industries to effortlessly gather geospatial data from the sky, enabling them to make more informed decisions, efficiently and effectively. Our flagship drone model, Marlyn, has a worldwide unique design that combines the flexibility of helicopters with the high performance of conventional fixed-wing aircraft. With our patented technology, we are targeting the global mapping industry, from construction and mining to agriculture and environmental applications for governmental, academic and SME institutions.

About TFC International

TFC International is a company specialised in the implementation of 3D modelling technologies.  The company is managed by Jean-François Rossignol, an international expert in Geographical Information System (G.I.S.), 3D modelling processes, management and quality control. TFC International has a large international network of technological and commercial partners to promote its technologies and methodologies.

About Island Conservation Society (ICS)

ICS is an NGO in the Seychelles that advises, and wherever necessary, manages environmental and conservation issues on the Seychelles. The mission statement of ICS states: 'The Society promotes the conservation and restoration of island ecosystems, sustainable development of islands, and awareness of their vulnerability and vital importance to the planet's biodiversity'.