Hovermap: from prototype to a spin-off

The Science and Industry Endowment Fund (SIEF) plays a vital role in supporting the development of Australian science.

SIEF’s Experimental Development Program (EDP) is designed to address funding gaps to progress technology development to a level where it attracts commercial investment and market uptake.

In 2016, through the SIEF EDP, the Robotics and Autonomous Systems Group were awarded $768,000 to establish an Early Adopter Program for Hovermap, aiming to advance the hardware and software components of the system to the point where they could be commercialised.

The Early Adopter Program led to significant learnings which improved Hovermap and made it a better product. It also generated significant interest and made the market aware of Hovermap’s capability, paving the way for its successful commercialisation.

Therefore, the SIEF EDP was crucial in supporting the Hovermap team to flight test the technology in real-life situations and translate prototypes into commercial products.

After raising $3.5 million in venture capital to commercialise Hovermap, Emesent was launched in November 2018.

Emesent is a drone autonomy and data analytics spin-out from CSIRO’s Data61 that is commercialising the revolutionising award-winning drone autonomy technology – Hovermap.

With multiple applications across several industries, Hovermap and other solutions offered by Emesent are being used commercially for a variety of applications by customers in Australia, US, Canada, China and Japan. Some of the preliminary applications of the Hovermap enabled drones, have been to accomplish the following:

  • Asset management  (Construction/ telecommunication (inspection and mapping of towers)/ process plant assets/ mines)
  • Infrastructure and building inspection
  • Forensic crime scene mapping
  • Underground mine mapping
  • Construction site mapping
  • Power line mapping
  • Collecting 3D  data and images for industrial inspections

The full case study ‘Intelligent LiDAR mapping and a navigating system for drones – Hovermap’ by SIEF can be read in full here.

We partner with small and large companies, government and industry in Australia and around the world to develop and mature robotic technologies from concept to commercialisation.

Contact us to learn more.


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