Project Sky Nose

Collect data and save lives.

Project Sky Nose

Principal Investigator Erik Meike

Project Sky Nose is a system that creates 3d models of atmospheric data. The data is collected by a quadcopter with a sensor payload. The sensor data is tagged with a location, and recorded. These data points are then visualized, creating a 3d map of the data recorded by the sensors.

Quadcopters are a good platform for this project because they can repeatedly fly the same path. This allows for analysis of a certain area over any time period ranging from hours to years. I used the DJI ground station to input and fly several paths including the one below.

This data can be used for analysis of air contaminants through 3d visualizations. For example, this could be used to examine the effect of automobile pollution on nearby neighborhoods or to analyze the spread of pesticides from a farmer's field. With a few more enhancements, it could detect gas leaks and hopefully prevent gas pipeline explosions. After an earthquake, a swarm of drones could be deployed to alert emergency personel about gas leaks before they ignite.

If you are interested in helping with this project, please contact me. Any help is appreciated, but I am looking for experts who can advise in three main areas. One area is environmental sensors to help decide what would be the most interesting to measure. Another is aircraft design for autonomous atmospheric sensing, and the third is visualization of the dataset.

Current Status

The system is operational. It can autonomously fly through waypoints with a set of sensors, record data, output KML, and visualize data.

View interactive in web browser here

Current System

  • Data parser that generates KML
  • Google Earth to visualize the KML
  • The sensor payload is shown below.


    This dataset shows the air pressure along a test flight path. The bluer the color, the lower the air pressure. As one would expect, the higher the elevation, the lower the air pressure. Click the image to view the map or download the data to view in 3d in Google Earth here.
    This dataset shows the readings from the particulate matter sensor on the same run. The bluer the color, the cleaner the air. You can see that the quadcopter blew the dust from the ground into the air when it took off in the lower right. Click the image to view the map or download the data to view in 3d in Google Earth here.

    Raw Data Downloads

    Dataset 1 Visualize Download This is the dataset pictured above.
    Dataset 2 Visualize Download Manual grid pattern
    Dataset 3 Visualize Download Short autonomous grid
    Dataset 4 Visualize Download Longer autonomous grid