T-Mobile Trains Own Pilot to Inspect Cell Towers

Telecom provider T-Mobile will now use Aerialtronics Unmanned Aerial Systems (UAS) as it becomes the first European provider to use drones to inspect 5,000 antennas in Holland. Aerialtronics will also provide the training as T-Mobile becomes unique in the telecoms world by using its own pilot. It is further confirmation that T-Mobile will make structural use of drones in its operations. 
T-Mobile purchased the drone from Aerialtronics, an international manufacturer of state-of-the-art UAS for civilian and commercial purposes after testing the UAS in the Netherlands. The HD camera also supplied by the company is equipped with heat sensors and transmitters, enabling real-time analysis of the data.
The results of the first pilot at the stadium of FC Utrecht were very encouraging. Jeffrey Leentjes, network specialist at T-Mobile, said: “Normally it would take a week of using a cherry picker to get the right photos of the special stadium antennas and antenna masts and perform the checks. Now the drone can fly around the station and mast in just 15 minutes and we got the right images for our inspections.”
There are many advantages to using drones. It saves time and money and working with drones is safer than using a cherry picker. Drones supplied by Aerialtronics can also be used in poor weather, unlike cherry pickers.
The T-Mobile pilot will start inspecting the first of 5,000 antenna installations using the company’s own unmanned aerial system supplied by Aerialtronics in mid-July.
Jeremy Wigmore, CEO of Aerialtronics, said: “We are delighted the tests went so well and we are pleased T-Mobile are using our UAS. We look forward to building a strong relationship with T-Mobile in the future.”
At the moment, permission must be obtained from the aviation authority before every flight.
T-Mobile is optimistic about the first steps taken by the European Aviation Community to enable European regulation on drones.
Source: Press Release

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