Drones for Waste Management


Drones are offering the waste industry innovative new ways of reducing costs, increasing accuracy of data collection, and providing greater oversight and efficiency in landfill assessment.





Highly accurate 3D models can provide volumetric analysis of areas that are hazardous to inspect from the ground, improving site safety while also allowing operations to continue while the survey is being conducted, resulting in reduced downtime.

Mapping of Landfills

Landfill managers are required to patrol their sites on foot regularly to address potential hazards that tend to increase in landfills. But landfills are massive and difficult to maneuver. With aerial access from drones, managers no longer have to hike through unstable terrain. In general, drone mapping of landfills has proven to be more time-efficient and less laborious.

With photos and videos captured by drones flying smoothly over the terrain, managers can analyze the landfill topography. This is then used to study the critical points of potential threats at the location, from examining the stability of the slope to tracking gases that can escape and can cause explosions.

Additionally, drone image mapping is made more accurate than manned surveillance using 3D models built from 2D aerial shot images. These models are useful as drones not only save the physical drag that landfill managers use to assess the landfill site, but also provide a more accurate and successful site inspection

Airspace Management

Volumetric analysis of cells can generate airspace calculations in seconds. Periodic surveys can increase the life of cells by tracking compaction rate over time.

Drone mapping saves time and money by providing a detailed overview of their sites in a fraction of the time it takes to do ground inspections.

Compliance Reporting

Airscope offers a cost effective way to collect the data needed to calculate current, changed and remaining airspace for your compliance reports.

Measurements can also be exported into tables and all major GIS software packages including ArcGIS, CAD & Bentley.

Thermal Landfill Mapping

In landfills, biogas is generated from waste mixtures, which can be explosive. To curb this situation, UAVs can be used to detect abnormal temperatures to prevent potential emergencies. The drone can fly over the landfill and scan areas with a thermal imager. These cameras analyze the thermal changes within set perimeters of the landfill. Landfill managers use this data to determine the potential risks of explosion and fire.

Thanks to the thermal imaging cameras installed, drones are even more reliable in detecting thermal anomalies than terrestrial thermal imaging. They measure many thermal statistics in real time and immediately send feedback. These drones bring added value to thermographic inspection of landfills


  • Quick deployment, with easy access to areas otherwise difficult to enter on the ground
  • Improved safety in dangerous areas such as the receiving pit at a waste-to-energy plant or transfer station
  • Building & Roof Inspections
  • Inspection of the earth dikes or outfalls at large leachate or wastewater treatment ponds

Topographic Survey

  • Repeatable surveys allow the the monitoring of landfill progress over time
  • Tracking the size or location of a landfill work site
  • Monitoring the quality and health of plant growth over landfill using NDVI survey
  • Volumetric Analysis


  • Monitoring of gradients on earthworks
  • Monitoring house keeping
  • Assessing an accident in which hazardous materials are involved and access to the accident site is difficult
  • Use of an infrared camera to spot sub-surface fires

Enterprise Class Technology

Airscope has enormous pride in it’s relentless pursuit of the best technology available.
We work with established and proven brands such as WORKSWELL, FLIR and UVIRCO for specialist sensors and software.