19, January 2024

Danish Industry Award for mapping groundwater worldwide

Press release: DI East Jutland Initiative Award 2023

The Aarhus-based company SkyTEM Surveys ApS in Lisbjerg has developed helicopter-borne geophysical equipment used for mapping groundwater, minerals, and geotechnical issues. The Danish groundwater has already been mapped, and the method is widely used globally. The company has initiated an ambitious development plan, including the establishment of subsidiaries in various countries and the introduction of an entirely new drone-based technology.

Danish Industry Award for groundwater mapping
Danish Industry Award for groundwater mapping

This achievement will now be rewarded with Dansk Industri Østjylland’s Initiative Award 2023.

“We would like to reward SkyTEM for their ability to think innovatively in times of significant changes, both commercial and climatic. It is a good example that solutions beneficial for the environment can also make a compelling business case,” says Anders Strange, chairman of the board for DI East Jutland.

By flying in a helicopter over a landscape with the equipment originally developed by SkyTEM in collaboration with researchers at Aarhus University, groundwater quantities can be measured quite precisely down to a depth of 500 meters – without the need for excavation. This allows water resources to be quickly and efficiently located.

The new drone-based solutions under development will open up a range of new applications that are less suitable for helicopter-based solutions due to their lack of technical capability and cost. Initially, drone solutions will be used for mapping shallow groundwater occurrences on a smaller scale, identifying areas for surface water infiltration into groundwater reservoirs (“Managed Aquifer Recharge”), mapping the natural protection of groundwater against surface pollution, especially nitrate, and monitoring saltwater infiltration in coastal areas, among others. In the long run, the goal is for drones to completely take over from helicopters, as drone solutions offer the potential for much better scalability across a variety of applications.

In addition to groundwater, both helicopter and drone-based solutions can also be used for mapping minerals and resources underground, as well as for geotechnical investigations.

“SkyTEM is thus contributing to putting East Jutland and Denmark on the world map for sustainable solutions and demonstrating what can emerge from close collaboration between researchers and the business sector,” says Anders Strange.

Mayor Jacob Bundsgaard of Aarhus, who presented the award to the company along with the chairman of DI East Jutland, Anders Strange, said in this regard:

“It is a great pleasure to congratulate SkyTEM on DI East Jutland’s Initiative Award 2023. It is both an impressive technology, and it’s fantastic to see how a company of SkyTEM’s size has managed to make a significant mark in the international market. Water is a scarce resource, and it is something we, here in Aarhus, focus on extensively. Therefore, SkyTEM is a perfect match for our business strategy, and the initiative award underscores why SkyTEM has already become a collaborator in Aarhus Municipality’s regulatory cooperation in South Africa and India in the water sector.”

SkyTEM Competing for DI’s National Initiative Award

DI’s Initiative Award is a tribute to small and medium-sized enterprises. In 2023, there was also a special focus on rewarding companies that have built a strong foundation for growth by thinking innovatively and creating new sustainable solutions in a world characterized by change and uncertainty, with rising material prices, uncertain global supply chains, and a shortage of workers

The winner of this year’s Initiative Award in East Jutland competes for DI’s nationwide Initiative Award, which will be presented in spring 2024.

The company received the Initiative Award on Friday, January 19, at 1:00 PM at SkyTEM’s headquarters in Aarhus, Denmark. The award was presented by Mayor Jacob Bundsgaard and Chairman of DI East Jutland, Anders Strange.

Photo: John Dahl

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