Stratus Aeronautics has been developing our magnetometer payload for several years. A magetometer is a geophysical instrument that measures the strength of Earth’s magnetic field. Geologic features and metal objects can alter the local magnetic field. These changes can be measured by conducting an airborne survey and can be identified on a map.
Magnetometers have been used around the world to locate valuable resources such as iron, gold, diamonds and petroleum. They are also used to locate unexploded ordinance and buried metallic objects such as steel pipes.
Below is an example of processed magnetometer data from the Canadian arctic,
Stratus aeronautics has sucessfuly completed a number of test surveys and some paid surveys. There are many challenges associated with magnetic instruments, interference, quality control to name a few. We have been sucessful in overcoming these and other problems during the development of the magnetometer payload. We are not quite ready for mainstream magnetic survey work but that day is quickly approaching.
The photo on the left shows our Geometrics Caesium magnetometer mounted in our first generation UAV in 2005. (click for a larger view)
Here is another example of a survey that we conducted at the Diavik diamond property, also in the Canadian arctic,
In addition to our “mag plane” we have developed two Skydart systems. These are towed birds that are carried on a helicopter sling. The Skydart has almost the exact same sensor array and recording system as the Mag UAV.
We have two types of magnetic sensors Cesium and Proton Procession. We use the Cesium sensors for aerial survey work because the are very precise. Stratus can process all of our own data and produce maps in a variety of formats.