The Illinois Department of Transportation test drone technology for future construction applications.
Earlier this year at the start of 2017, the Illinois Department of Transportation (IDOT) invested in drone technology in a move to modernize and optimize the department. The department purchased two drones for use in various projects, including construction projects. Although the IDOT has just begun it’s research and development process via drone technology, the department has big plans to incorporate drones into their everyday processes.
Looking towards the future, the IDOT is planning to use drone technology for 3D design on projects, geological studies, and technical exhibits. In addition, the department is planning to use drones for the use of collecting information for the public about various construction projects.
The IDOT also plans to use the drone technology to deliver traffic information to commuters and travelers via live-stream video. They are exploring the benefits of using drone photography as well, to help travelers make better driving decisions in winter storms and other inclement weather.
So far, the Illinois Department of Transportation has flown the drones in two testing locations: Effingham and Morton, Illinois. The drones flew over interstates and captured video which can be seen below.
Drone Technology on the Rise
The Illinois Department of Transportation is not the first DOT to make the move towards drone technology. Last year, the Department of Transportation in Minnesota invested in drone technology to assist in bridge inspection. Since the summer of 2016, the MDOT has performed various testing phases with drones on bridge inspections successfully.
In addition, midway through last year, the Connecticut DOT also invested over $15,000 in a one day drone project to test bridge inspections using drone technology.