As mentioned in a previous press release, ASI recently started work under the USDA’s 5-year blanket purchase agreement for aerial imagery. Within two (2) hours of notice to proceed, ASI had crews in the air mobilizing to their assigned locations across the country. Quickly deploying to a project anywhere in the country at a moment’s notice is what ASI prides itself on and takes a considerable amount of planning, preparation, and attention to detail to make happen.
These are traits that have helped develop ASI’s internal project management command center, or “Alpha”. This web-based application was developed in-house as part of a collaborative effort between ASI flight, production, and programming professionals. Alpha was developed by our teams to provide greater visibility of every project that ASI takes on.
“The application’s dashboard features real-time insights allowing ASI team members to make informed decisions that can expedite a project’s completion saving our clients’ time and money” said Jason Dolf, Director of Flight Operations.
Alpha was developed with the idea that the project is broken down in to two overarching project phases, pre-flight planning/flight and production. For flight, Alpha compiles data from several various resources such as the National Weather Service, ESRI, FAA, Flight Aware and many more.
These data sources feed selected information into a centralized location for ASI’s flight teams. The dashboard displays current and future weather conditions on an interactive map, flight plan maps overlaying the AOI, live-time updates of flight line completion, project completion & remaining schedule estimations (calculates based on several variables), airspace information, crew and equipment detail, equipment maintenance scheduling and several other critical pieces of data needed to manage multiple large complex projects occurring simultaneously, nationwide.
Alpha was not only designed with the flight team in mind, though. Once the acquisition phase of the project is complete, ASI production crews kick-off their project workflow within Alpha by completing the initial QA/QC of the lidar or orthoimagery and immediately notifying flight crews of any necessary re-flights or indicating the initial QC has passed and flight crews can depart the project AOI. Throughout the remainder of the production process, whether it’s a county-wide orthomosaic, classified lidar dataset , topo maps, or contours, ASI production utilizes Alpha to manage each step of every project happening concurrently throughout ASI.
ASI’s project managers and executive also team have greater visibility of projects, schedules, resources, from a 10,000”. When managing multiple large projects concurrently at the state-wide and nation-wide levels having a project management system such as Alpha helps facilitate great communication and visibility of each project for all ASI’s professionals. It also promotes a consistent, steady workflow with an attention to every detail while moving data expeditiously through our hands and into our clients.
“Because I have all of the information I need in one concise location, I can make confident decisions about where to send crews and when based on weather patterns and other uncontrollable factors that affect geospatial data,” said Dolf. “I can also confidently give expectations and recommendations to our clients that will result in the best geospatial product for the best price while working it into the client’s schedule.”
“This project is the culmination of multiple years of development, countless meetings, and collaboration between all departments at ASI and we are extremely proud of the result. We’re able to track projects with greater attention to every detail with visibility of each project as we are committed to providing the best possible client experience” added Owner/CEO Mike Tully.
Although the system has been up and running for some time now, our teams are continuously refining what information is available on the dashboard and the source of that information to ensure our teams have the most accurate and up-to-date information on every project at any given time. ASI workflows are also frequently updated as new processes are implemented to reduce production times and maintain national mapping accuracy standards.