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  • Writer's pictureJafet Chaves

RidgeRun’s Professional Software Solutions And Services: A Drone Use Case

Updated: Apr 29


This image shows a drone in the air with a a sunset over the ocean horizon in the background
Image by kjpargeter on Freepik

Introduction


For more than 15 years RidgeRun has stood out as a beacon for expertise and ingenuity in the fast-paced field of embedded systems and cutting-edge technology. RidgeRun has established itself as a prominent provider of professional services in the field of software for embedded systems, offering a wide variety of solutions suited to the specific demands of clients from various industries around the world.


RidgeRun's high touch suite of professional services is aimed at handling the complexities that arise during the development and implementation of software for embedded systems. Our team of seasoned professionals interacts directly with clients from the moment of project conception, to execution, and all the way to deliver complete and customized approaches that increase efficiency, boost functionality, and unlock the hidden potential of their embedded devices. Some examples of these services include:

  • Embedded Linux Customization and Development

  • GStreamer Consulting and Multimedia Solutions

  • Linux Device Drivers Development

  • Computer Vision

  • Machine Learning and AI Integration

Product Development Process


RidgeRun's software development process is based on a standardized and collaborative approach that ensures the seamless conversion of ideas into sturdy and stable integrated solutions. To obtain optimal results, our team of experienced software engineers follows a structured methodology from the early conception stage to the final deployment. In general this process can be summarized as follows:

  • Requirement Analysis

  • Project estimation

  • Architecture and Design

  • Implementation and Coding

  • Deployment

  • Maintenance and Support

This process is iterative and every stage is revisited constantly so that customer feedback is integrated quickly. RidgeRun embraces agility and understands that rapid change is necessary for project success.


This image illustrates the different stages taken during  the development of a software product
Software Product Development Process

Drone Use Case


Let's explore a concrete example of RidgeRun's expertise applied in the context of a drone use case: a typical customer application. We will emphasize the importance of video and audio in these applications.


Drones Capabilities


More than ever before drones have evolved as reliable tools with many applications. These span diverse industries such as agriculture, surveillance, filmmaking and search-and-rescue missions to mention just a few. In general let’s consider the following functionality for drones, for example:

  • Vision and Object Detection

  • Crash Detection and Avoidance

  • User Control and Teleoperation

  • Custom Analysis and Data Insights

  • Entertainment

This image shows an artistic illustration of drones being used in the farming industry
Image by macrovector on Freepik

Now, consider the following concrete cases of drone use in an agricultural context for crop monitoring and precision agriculture or surveillance. Drone-captured high-resolution video gives farmers and agricultural experts important real-time insights. RidgeRun enables drones to shoot clear and comprehensive footage of crops from various altitudes and angles thanks to sophisticated camera integration and multimedia pipeline development services. The camera on the drone can be adjusted to include advanced functions such as zoom, picture stabilization, and HDR imaging, which improves the quality of the drone's footage.


Another possible feature enabled through RidgeRun’s services and solutions, is for the drone to transmit live video to a ground station, allowing farmers to monitor, in real time, crop health, detect anomalies, and identify potential problems like pest infestations, nutritional deficits, or irrigation concerns. The capacity to obtain such visual data in real-time enables farmers to make prompt decisions, optimize resource allocation, and increase crop yield overall.


Audio sensors on the drone can identify sounds associated with agricultural machinery, animal activity, or even environmental elements such as rainfall and wind patterns in the context of precision agriculture. Farmers obtain a thorough awareness of their fields' health and can respond proactively to any difficulties by combining sound data with visual information.


Audio data can be utilized in surveillance applications to recognize and locate certain sounds, such as distress calls or unusual noises in remote places. RidgeRun's solutions allow the drone to rapidly interpret and send audio data, increasing the effectiveness of surveillance operations.


RidgeRun's expertise in multimedia solutions and GStreamer consulting enables drones to use video and audio in a range of applications. These capabilities, in the context of precision agriculture, enable farmers to make data-driven decisions, boost production, and encourage sustainable farming practices. RidgeRun's expertise is critical in leveraging the potential of these diverse airborne platforms such as drones that continue to revolutionize many different sectors.


Common Software Challenges in Drone Development


As it is known from RidgeRun’s past experience, drone software development presents unique problems since these flying devices work in dynamic and resource-constrained contexts. It is critical and common to address the following issues in drone development to achieve optimal performance and reliability:

  • Reduce Software Resources Consumption

  • Reduce Latency

  • Streaming/Control Stability

  • Power Consumption

  • Features Requested vs. Hardware Capabilities

Typical Workflow of Software Projects for Drones


A typical project process for software projects with drones includes a methodical strategy to ensure the successful creation and deployment of efficient, dependable, and feature-rich software solutions. A step-by-step summary of the project workflow is provided below, taking into account elements such as software feature validation and prototyping, performance measurements, resource optimization, and production application development discussed previously:

  • Requirements Gathering and Analysis

  • Software Features Validation and Prototyping

  • Performance Measurements

  • Resources Optimization (Latency, CPU/GPU, etc)

  • Iterative Development and Testing

  • Production Application Development

  • Deployment and Integration

  • Maintenance and Support

RidgeRun Services Catalog for Drones

This images summarizes the services RidgeRun provides that can be used in drone products
RidgeRun Services Catalog for Drone Use Cases

Through the expertise accumulated over the years, RidgeRun has always expanded the range of services it provides for embedded systems. In the use case of drones this is not an exception and, in fact, there are currently several niche services that RidgeRun provides in order to create robust drones solutions. Among these services are:


  • Prototyping: Because it enables for the rapid development and validation of software ideas and concepts, prototyping is a crucial service that fits well with drone use cases. Developers may quickly design proof-of-concept solutions to test multiple functionality and must have features during the prototype phase. This is also useful so that customers can ask for project funding or validate idea feasibility.

  • Camera Device Driver Development: A crucial component of drones nowadays is a digital camera. These specialized cameras typically require a device driver in order to harness the full potential of the hardware. Developing a camera driver is not only image capturing, but exposing advanced controls such as HDR, auto exposure, white balance, auto focus, led flicker mitigation, etc…

  • Camera Synchronization: Camera synchronization is critical in applications where drones use several cameras or require synchronized visual data capture. RidgeRun's camera synchronization services allow drones to collect photos and videos at the same time, assuring exact temporal alignment and enabling applications such as 3D reconstruction, panoramic imaging, and stereo vision for example.

  • Application Development: Application development is crucial to exploit the full potential of drones for its specific use case. RidgeRun's application development expertise ensures that the drone's software meets the customer's specific needs.

  • Features Integration (Tracking, Object Detection, Stabilization, etc.): Integrating advanced features is a critical stage of improving drone capabilities for certain use cases. RidgeRun's expertise in combining technologies such as digital image processing, artificial intelligence, object detection, tracking, video stabilization, and augmented reality enables drones to do complex jobs precisely and accurately. Object detection and tracking, for example, make automated inspections easier, while picture stabilization ensures smooth and stable video footage during aerial recording or live streaming.

  • Profiling and optimization: Profiling and optimization services are crucial for increasing drone software performance and efficiency. Developers can detect bottlenecks and areas of resource inefficiency by undertaking detailed performance measurements and analysis. This includes assessing aspects like latency, CPU/GPU utilization, and memory consumption in order to optimize crucial components and algorithms for drones.


What’s Next?


Now that you are aware a little bit more of how RidgeRun’s can be applied for the development of drones, feel free to search for more information about RidgeRun products used in this kind of projects. Please refer to the following links:


For technical questions or any service inquiry, please send an email to support@ridgerun.com or send a message through http://www.ridgerun.com/contact.



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