Surf Life Saving NSW needed to find an asset tracking, registration and identification solution for their rapidly expanding drone Surf Fleet. With multiple costal locations and an increasing monetary commitment, they needed a cost-effective process that could provide certainty in this process and uniquely identify every drone, part and accessory.
As part of their fleet supply engagement SLSNSW (in consultation with Sphere Drones) requested a solution be developed that could cost effectively track, identify and formally register every drone, drone part and accessory across their fleet kits and across multiple NSW beach locations.
The solution also had to take into consideration the harsh operating environment the drones are subjected to including salt air, salt water, high UV, wind, rain and sand. In addition, be ‘field-sturdy’ for the multiple application the drones carry out including shark monitoring, swimmer notification and rescue device deployment.
Adding to the challenge, rotating surf team personnel making tracking increasingly difficult.
It was agreed that every SLSNSW kit – and every component of each kit – be branded with a uniquely allocated asset and registration code.
To do this, high-quality decals would be developed that could be applied to each and every drone, drone part and accessory.
Sphere Drones began the process designing & creating bespoke branded artwork for SLS NSW’s drone, drone accessories and parts.
At the same time, an asset database was created that could provide easy and rapid asset identification of every component in use and at very location for SLSNSW.
Initial designs were completed and then prototyped to ensure field success. In regard to material selection and use:
- Three types of high-quality vinyl decal stock were tested to meet the demanding SLSNSW applications.
- For field longevity, three different UV laminates were tested.
- For vibrancy and legibility over time, three (environmentally friendly) inks were tested.
The comprehensive testing of each was necessary to meet the complexity and multitude of variations in the 3D shapes of the drones, drone part and accessories.
Once testing was complete and the vinyl stock, UV laminate and inks were selected, the final artwork was merged with the asset database and the custom SLSNSW branded decals for the drones, drone parts and accessories were produced and then applied to each and every component in the fleet.
Importantly, the final asset and identification decals were UV tolerant, moisture resistant and scuff proof – essential given the element exposure they are subjected to on a daily basis.
- All fleet components are now branded and accounted for across all SLSNSW locations.
- New fleet additions now follow a linear branding and asset identification process before they are put into the field.
- SLS personnel can now easily and readily identify what parts belong to each kit.
- Reporting can now identify issues and past drone history.
- A fully managed (and manageable) inventory and asset register is in place that professionally and precisely manages all products.
- Allows for across the board changes to any and all kits.
- Locations are now accountable for their fleet kit management