Nebraska Department of Economic Development Matches Grant
Drone Amplified has been awarded a National Science Foundation (NSF) Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) grant for $224,999. The Nebraska Department of Economic Development has matched the grant to conduct research and development work on enabling intelligent drone-based aerial ignition for prescribed fires and backburns for wildfires.
Drone Amplified’s drone-based system called IGNIS is reducing risk and cost to enable intelligent aerial ignition for prescribed fires and backburn ignitions on wildfires. Wildfires cause over $350 billion in damages and billions more are spent on prescribed and wildfires each year in the United States. As the size and number of wildfires increase, prescribed fires have emerged as one of the most cost-effective tools to reduce catastrophic damage by removing excess fuel for wildfires. Yet, most prescribed fires today are managed by people in close proximity to the fire or with the use of expensive manned helicopters, which are not always available when needed.
“The National Science Foundation supports small businesses with the most innovative, cutting-edge ideas that have the potential to become great commercial successes and make huge societal impacts,” said Barry Johnson, Director of the NSF’s Division of Industrial Innovation and Partnerships. “We hope that this seed funding will spark solutions to some of the most important challenges of our time across all areas of science and technology.”
“What we’ve invented is the game changer – the technology to more safely, and efficiently, manage fires,” said Carrick Detweiler, CEO of Drone Amplified. “We can send drones into active fires in any kind of terrain. The SBIR grant will enable the development of additional intelligence to make IGNIS smarter and faster,” he added.