Drones to assess state of campus roofs

Published October 20, 2016 at 3:42 PM

Drones will fly over UB’s three campuses next week, taking infrared scans of the roofs of all campus buildings as part of the university’s effort to plan for future roof replacements.

Weather permitting, the drones will fly over the North Campus on Oct. 24, the South Campus on Oct. 25 and the Downtown Campus on Oct. 26; alternate dates are Oct. 27-29.

UB has hired EnableUAV LLC to visually inspect the roofs and take infrared scans to detect water infiltration. The visual inspections are set to take place in the afternoon, while the infrared scans will be performed in the evening. The drones also will scan all solar panels and the South Campus steam tunnels to determine if there are failed panels and leaks in the tunnel.

The project should not cause any significant disruption to campus activities, according to Mark S. Adams, safety engineer for Environment, Health & Safety.

The drones will be flying 200 to 400 feet above campus buildings, with the designated takeoff and landing zone roped off.

The flights will be performed by FAA-licensed personnel operating under a certificate of waiver for night operations, Adams says.