Oregon-based FLIR has officially gone all in on drones. In the last few weeks alone, the company has started shipping the latest version of the FLIR Vue thermal camera for UAVs and announced a partnership with DJI to bring their new thermal imaging cameras to the Inspire 1 and Matrice 100 in the form of the new Zenmuse XT.
The Zenmuse XT uses FLIR’s Tau 2 cameras and will offer resolutions of 640 x 512 and 336 x 256.
The gimbal and camera can be controlled directly through the DJI GO mobile app, which means there is essentially no learning curve for operators familiar with DJI’s products.
Professionals in the inspection, precision agriculture, search and rescue, and, most obviously, firefighting spaces have been slowly adopting thermal camera equipped UAVs for a few years now, but with this marriage of DJI and FLIR, adoption of these tools is guaranteed to quicken.
FLIR’s background has always had a more military/surveillance background when it came to UAVs but, recognizing a huge opportunity, the company released the Vue thermal camera earlier this year and updated the platform with the launch of the Pro version at the beginning of December.
The FLIR Vue and Vue Pro give users in-flight control of two camera functions through direct PWM connections and are compatible with DJI’s Phantom drones thanks to the camera’s easy power-in/analog-out connection.
The cameras are also able to integrate with Pix4D’s standard-setting 3D modeling software so users can create thermal maps and models, in 3D, from the sky.
To control the Vue Pro’s settings, FLIR has released a mobile app that gives users direct control of camera functions like changing the image’s color palettes, starting and stopping recording, and the camera’s e-zoom.
The Pro version also includes an on-board micro-SD card.
DJI has not released any pricing or shipping details about the Zenmuse XT, but by itself, the Vue starts at $1,499 and the Pro starts at $1,999.
Alan is serial entrepreneur, active angel investor, and a drone enthusiast. He co-founded DRONELIFE.com to address the emerging commercial market for drones and drone technology. Prior to DRONELIFE.com, Alan co-founded Where.com, ThinkingScreen Media, and Nurse.com. Recently, Alan has co-founded Crowditz.com, a leader in Equity Crowdfunding Data, Analytics, and Insights. Alan can be reached at alan(at)dronelife.com