Pix4D Climate Contest

Pix4D Climate Contest could earn you money for your drone project ideas

Drones have long been seen as a tool to make things more environmentally friendly. Drones that spray fertilizers or pesticides over farms can be more precise, reducing the need to put extraneous chemicals on the ground. Underwater drones are mapping the ocean, a crucial component of climate change. Even Intel’s drone light shows have been called an alternative to fireworks.

And now, photogrammetry software company Pix4D wants to give you money to further the environmental cause.

Swiss-based drone company Pix4D is hosting its first ever ‘Climate Contest.’ The contest is open for anyone to submit a project that involves using mapping to investigate or mitigate the climate crisis.

The grand prize winner in the Pix4D Climate Contest will walk away with $3,000, plus Pix4D software and personal tech support. Pix4D is currently accepting entries for its Climate Contest through Dec. 13, and winners will be announced in Jan. 2020. The judging panel includes Pix4D GIS-experts, environmental activists and a representative from Swiss Youth for Climate.

According to the contest makers, any individual, group, business, school or organization can enter. And even if you have just an idea, it could be good enough to win; projects don’t need to have started to be considered.

All you have to do is create a ‘project proposal,’ but you do have to show intent to carry it out by the end of 2020, if you’re not in the process of doing so already.

Pix4D said the projects will be scored on factors like originality, climate impact, projects that show the role and importance of cartography and 3D modeling and projects that are presented clearly.

Pix4D added that projects get bonus points if they contribute to more of the UN sustainable development goals.

December 13, 2019. Winners will be announced by email in January 2020.

Pix4D has, for a long time, been involved in the climate change space. Their software has been used to track melting glaciers in rural Kyrgyzstan, count the cost of storm damaged crops in Puerto Rico, and to map chimpanzee nests in Tanzania, among other uses.

Related read: Meet the woman whose project uses drones to study El Nino’s impact on California

Pix4D, which is based in Switzerland but has offices worldwide including in Shanghai, San Francisco, Tokyo, Madrid and a recently opened office in Denver, builds software that can take images taken by drone or plane, and turn them into georeferenced survey-grade 2D mosaics, 3D models
and point clouds.

Pix4D isn’t the only company to jump on using drones to address climate change. Another mapping company, Drone Deploy, last year announced a partnership with The Climate Corporation (a company designed to help businesses manage and adapt to climate change) to streamline agriculture workflows, including identifying crop issues and quantifying yield loss.

And companies like DroneSeed also claim their solutions are good for the environment. In DroneSeed’s case, the company can quickly plant trees by building drones that can blast fertilizer and seeds into the ground at 350 feet per second.

Learn more about the Pix4D Climate Contest here.

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