Voltin lands Industry 4.0 Award for building safety tech

Stuart Mason

Brisbane-based tech firm Voltin has won the InnovationAus 2023 Award for Excellence in the Industry 4.0 category for its innovative way to determine the safety of large buildings.

The InnovationAus 2023 Awards for Excellence were presented on Wednesday night at a black-tie gala dinner at the Hordern Pavilion in Sydney.

The Industry 4.0 Award was proudly sponsored by Industry Growth Centre METS Ignited. It was presented on the night by METS Ignited CEO Adrian Beer.

The fourth industrial revolution is all about transforming how businesses create and capture value with the use of bleeding-edge technologies in innovative new ways.

Votlin owner Grant O’Hara said he was very excited just to be shortlisted, let alone winning in the category. “You can’t really underestimate what that can do for a business like ours and we’re so proud,” he added.

Voltin’s Grant O’Hara and Ed Pepping with METS Ignited chief executive Adrian Beer

This centres on the use of Internet of Things devices, automation, robotics, artificial intelligence, machine learning and digital twinning.

This category celebrated the Australian companies paving the way forward in Industry 4.0, helping drive the growth of manufacturing and other sectors.

Voltin took out the award for its disruptive approach to conducting building safety assessments using tethered drones and artificial intelligence.

The Brisbane-based company is modernising the process of detecting flaws in large buildings, which is currently unreliable, unsafe and expensive.

Drones have often been seen as the solution to this issue, but this has a number of limitations, including that they can’t be used in densely populated areas due to air safety regulations.

Voltin is able to provide inspections that bring building facade condition assessments into the 21st century, replacing the existing low-tech manual building inspections with high-resolution visual data capture and AI-driven photogrammetry modelling software.

This is done through the use of tethered drones, meaning it can be done in major cities and has the approval of the Civil Aviation Safety Authority and Air Services Australia.

Voltin’s technology can find previously unidentified flaws and precise defect locations in buildings, such as cracks, corrosion and peeling paint. Its service works on concrete, cladding, glass and metallic composites.

Voltin also utilises AI and machine learning to analyse images and provide corrective action for the defects identified.

Mr O’Hara said he originally started a company that “manually identified building defects and facade defects”.

“We knew that there had to be a better way. We found an automated way. We combined photogrammetry with AI to actually find these defects. We cover 100 per cent of the building and we do it in third of the time at a third of the cost,” Mr O’Hara said.

“There’s actually no other really similar companies to us. Not that we discourage competition, we think that there’s a long way to go…We call on all the engineers to look at our tech and to use our tech because you’ll know a lot more about a building façade.”

The other finalists in the Industry 4.0 category were SIMPaCT and XIoT Tag maker Xsights.

The InnovationAus 2023 Awards for Excellence are proudly supported by Investment NSW, AusIndustry, Australian Computer Society, Technology Council of Australia, Agile Digital, CSIRO, TechnologyOne, IP Australia, METS Ignited and Q-CTRL.

Do you know more? Contact James Riley via Email.

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