drone harmony raises $1.6m to accelerate autonomous drone flight planning

Switzerland-based drone mission planning platform Drone Harmony has raised $1.6 million to fast-track innovation in its full-3D flight planning products and stake out strategic partnerships with drone and infrastructure digitalization companies.

This is the first time that the bootstrapped software as a service (SaaS) provider is raising funds since its establishment in 2016. The fresh capital infusion comes from Spicehaus Partners AG, Zürcher Kantonalbank, as well as some private investors.

Drone Harmony’s software automates data acquisition workflows in commercial drone missions. Simplifying complex-looking infrastructure inspections, the company’s Full-3D Flight Planning Engine can be used to inspect telecommunication towers, electric grids, infrastructure networks (railways, roads, pipelines, etc.), and bridges. As an added bonus, the platform also supports terrain-aware surveys.

Martin Fuchsberger, cofounder and CEO at Drone Harmony, points out that their software is used to plan and execute more than 150,000 drone flights around the globe every year. And now, the funds raised by the company will further accelerate the innovation of its flight planning products that boast a full-3D interface for greater control over every drone operation.

Cell tower inspection with Drone Harmony

While announcing the new investment, the company also took the opportunity to illustrate a specific use case of its software: cell tower inspection.

With more than 3 million assets requiring regular inspections worldwide, the cell tower inspection market is among the fastest-growing and most promising drone inspection markets. However, operating a drone around a cell tower is challenging, if not dangerous.

As the company points out, the operator essentially plays the dual role of a professional pilot and cameraman solving a six-dimensional problem: flying a drone and directing a camera, both in three dimensions. This is what makes traditional drone inspection missions slow, time-consuming, and dangerous, requiring the services of expert pilots.

Drone Harmony’s Cell Tower Scan, meanwhile, transforms this process altogether. The flight planning engine determines the optimal flight trajectory and camera angles, followed by automated flight execution and data collection. The outcome? Inspections are safe, up to 80% faster, and the collected data is complete and of high quality.

Drone Harmony customer Stanley du Toit, a solution architect with the iGlobe Group, sums up the software’s capabilities with this comment:

With the Drone Harmony application acquisition being consistent, the flight patterns and automation provided us with steady high-quality models for the purposes of tower inspections.


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