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Birdstop, a remote sensing company, has raised $2.3 million in funding to expand its network of BVLOS (Beyond Visual Line of Sight) drones across the country’s critical infrastructure.
The company operates a collection of drones across the US that operate similarly to a collection of satellites on the ground. Birdstop’s technology uses a suite of risk mitigation measures in its proprietary low-altitude airspace deconfliction system to ensure the highest level of safety.
Birdstop has received several of the US’s top Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) approvals to conduct complex BVLOS operations. The company’s drones analyze and protect power grids, telecom networks, and other national critical infrastructure.
“We all use Google Maps, but few of us have seen a physical satellite. At Birdstop, we take the same approach for drones. Our customers receive data and intel but the drones are invisible to them,” Keith Miao, CEO of Birdstop, said. “We take away all the complexities of drones, robotics, and FAA regulations so that users simply dial into their assets in real-time, on-demand.”
Lerer Hippeau led the funding round and included participation from Anorak Ventures, Correlation Ventures, Data Tech Fund, Graph Ventures, Techstars, Timberline Holdings, and strategic investors Talon Aerolytics.
“Developments in drone technology and Beyond Visual Line of Sight (BVLOS) regulation over the past decade are allowing Birdstop’s vision to be realized for the first time,” Andrea Hippeau, Partner at Lerer Hippeau, said. “Birdstop’s ability to generate real-time intel remotely is a huge step forward for the industry.”
Birdstop’s technology isn’t just limited to infrastructure inspections. Its drones can also be used for extreme circumstances, including natural disasters and security breaches, and in over 20 other industries. These include agriculture, construction, and more.
The company recently opened a new R&D facility in Alabama to start scaling production of its systems, beginning with its airspace intelligence beacon.
Birdstop is a San Francisco Bay Area-based company that was founded by Miao. Miao previously had experience as a Google data scientist and Earth Institute satellite imagery researcher.