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New standard for building façade inspections using drones

Radio controlled quadcopter drone flying in the city

A newly standard on notating façade conditions in the field was developed by an ASTM task group that is also working on a proposed guide for using drones to do visual inspections.
Photo © Bigstock.com/smuki

The ASTM task group on façade inspections introduced E3036, Guide for Notating Façade Conditions in the Field, and proposed WK52572, Guide for Visual Inspection of Building Facades Using Drones to better building façade inspections.

E3036 provides standard notation, syntax, and symbols for façade inspections. It will save time by providing architects, engineers, and other professionals with a common way to use and understand symbols.

“This standard will be particularly useful to building owners who maintain a database on the conditions of their façade,” said Michael Petermann, ASTM member and principal at Wiss, Janney, Elstner (WJE) Associates. “As periodic inspections occur, they can perform side-by-side comparisons of databases and drawings to confirm if conditions have worsened. With the standard, they won’t waste time translating between notation systems of different firms.”

The task group hopes the proposed standard on drone use will address the growing need for camera-equipped drones to document façade conditions through video and still photos.

“This proposed standard will improve the quality of inspections by allowing drones with high quality cameras to provide close-up views of parts of the façade that cannot otherwise be seen,” Petermann added.

The proposed standard will likely include general guidance for safety, a protocol for video scanning facades, and storage for scan results for future use. ASTM welcomes participation in the development of these standards from architects, engineers, drone manufacturers, and others.

To purchase E3036, click here.

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