DORA: open Drone data platfOrm for biodiveRsity mApping

01 September 2023 → 31 August 2025
Federal funding: VLIR-UOS
Research disciplines
  • Engineering and technology
    • Data visualisation and imaging
  • Agricultural and food sciences
    • Forestry management and modelling
drones Forestry Biodiversity Computer vision Vietnam
Project description

The open Drone Data PlatfOrm for BiodiveRsity mApping (DORA) project aims to contribute to the preservation and protection of the biodiversity in the Ben En National Park (located in Nhu Thanh and Nhu Xuan districts of the Thanh Hoa province, covering 15,800 ha) through regular and comprehensive drone-based monitoring. The platform will contribute to the sustainable management of forests by providing precise and up-to-date information of plants species inventories to conservation organizations for making informed decisions. The project focuses on the biodiversity of the park, which has been impacted by human activities, and is home to numerous wildlife species. The development of an open drone data platform (including state-of-the-art photogrammetry and AI-based plant species analysis) will foster community involvement, drive scientific advancement and innovation, and enhance data interpretation. DORA will train local experts in Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (UAV) remote sensing to make UAV research and services more accessible and cost-effective, thereby creating a more inclusive and diverse community of UAV experts. The DORA project requires a holistic, fully integrated, and interdisciplinary approach that interweaves software development (drone data processing and AI technology) with domain-specific knowledge on biodiversity from the earliest stages of development. Therefore, DORA aims to build a lasting interdisciplinary and interinstitutional collaboration between universities in Vietnam (SEEE-HUST and VNUF) and Ghent University (URC), to promote knowledge exchange between computer scientists, UAV remote sensing researchers and forestry experts.