Black & Veatch Named to InformationWeek Elite 100 list for 2015 | Black & Veatch

Black & Veatch Named to InformationWeek Elite 100 list for 2015

Drone use to increase safety research makes 20 Great Ideas for 2015 list

OVERLAND PARK, Kansas (April 29, 2015) - Black & Veatch today announced it has been named to the InformationWeek Elite 100 list of innovative users of business technology. Black & Veatch’s application of drone technology to reduce the risks and costs of equipment tower inspections was also recognized as one of the 20 Great Ideas for 2015 by the editors.

“Black & Veatch is honored to be recognized by the InformationWeek Elite 100 for our exploration of drone technology in tower inspections,” said Marty Travers, president of Black & Veatch’s telecom business.

“Equipment tower inspections can be complicated activities requiring a great deal of planning and safety preparation. We are excited by the prospects of this innovative technology to reduce risks at climbs sites and improve the speed and quality of tower data collection.”

Marty Travers, president of Black & Veatch’s telecom business

During the trial, Black & Veatch demonstrated that in some instances camera-equipped drone copters can obtain information similar to visual inspections conducted by climbing crews. Reducing the number of climbs would reduce risk at the tower site. In addition, automated, wireless transmission of data from the drone could lead to faster reporting, reducing overall project cost and increasing client satisfaction. 

Black & Veatch also tested the use of drones along with other technology, such as photogrammetry techniques, which are used to represent existing environments in the form of 3D point clouds. Leveraging drones for photogrammetry has the potential to capture more area in less time than traditional methods such as terrestrial 3D laser scanning. It also can be performed at lower costs than traditional surveying processes. Similarly, wireless file transmission can speed the delivery of information and resulting 3D models into the hands of proposal and engineering teams.

2015 is InformationWeek's 27th year ranking the country's most innovative users of business technology. The InformationWeek Elite 100 tracks the IT practices of the nation's most innovative IT organizations, providing a unique opportunity to understand and examine the business practices of these firms across core areas of operations, including, technology deployment, IT budgets, business-technology infrastructure, and IT strategies. 

Additional details about the InformationWeek Elite100 can be found online at:

Editor’s Notes:

  • Black & Veatch has been ranked #1 for Telecommunications in the Engineering News-Record (ENR) Top 500 Design Firms report for the past five years.
  • The possible business uses of drones were examined during a two-week, cross-discipline technology brainstorm session of Black & Veatch engineers.
  • Improved tower safety was the first application identified by the team — receiving unanimous support.
  • Drones have potential uses in other design applications that can consume point cloud data natively such as CAD design, Building Information Modeling (BIM) workflows, proposal and marketing information and images.

Media Contact Information:

PATRICK MACELROY | +1 212-973-1339 x18 P | +1 516-477-0914 M | 24-HOUR MEDIA HOTLINE | +1 866-496-9149

About Black & Veatch

Black & Veatch is an employee-owned, global leader in building critical human infrastructure in Energy, Water, Telecommunications and Government Services. Since 1915, we have helped our clients improve the lives of people in over 100 countries through consulting, engineering, construction, operations and program management. Our revenues in 2018 were US$3.5 billion. Follow us on and in social media.

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