How Have Drones Changed Underground Mapping?

On-demand Webinar | Free

Drones have revolutionized underground mapping operations. With their ability to operate in dark and dangerous environments, uncrewed aerial vehicles provide mappers with easily operated tools that allow access to places human mappers could never go. Moreover, the addition of sophisticated imaging technologies allows for improvements in many operations, including equipment inspections, locating and mapping buried steel pipelines, and more.

This webinar will bring together experts from the underground mapping industry to discuss the current state of the technology and the many ways mappers are adapting drones to their work. These professionals will also offer advice for individuals looking to add UAV technology and related systems to their underground mapping operations.


Raffi Jabrayan, Vice President, Business Development & Commercial Sales, Exyn Technologies

Raffi Jabrayan is the VP, Commercial Sales and Business Development for Exyn Technologies. He oversees the expansion of the business internationally in the mining and construction sectors, as well as penetration into other industries. A large part of his role at Exyn is to help miners leverage the data produced by Exyn's autonomous aerial robots to streamline underground inspections, enhance operational efficiency and reduce risk.

Prior to joining Exyn, Raffi managed digital and technology innovation projects for Dundee Precious Metals and was intimately involved with operationalizing new technologies into Dundee’s workflow. Raffi oversaw the scouting, due diligence, implementation and post integration assessment of Dundee’s digital and technology projects. Raffi is a seasoned mining professional with practical experience at both the plant and corporate level in various capacities, and has completed the Digital Business Strategy Program at MIT Sloan as well as Driving Strategic Impact from Columbia Business School.

Mehdi Laichoubi, CTO, SKIPPER NDT

Mehdi Laichoubi is an Aerospace Engineer and Chief Technical Officer (CTO) at Skipper NDT. He leads R&D programs related to Unmanned Aircraft Systems (UAS) in the following areas: 

  • Design of embedded systems for airborne magnetic measurement 
  • Magnetic data interpretation applied to buried pipeline networks and facilities
  • Algorithmic and geolocation

Mehdi is the Inventor of one patent related to SKIPPER NDT’s technology and the author of papers on 3D mapping of buried pipelines. 

He holds a Master’s degree in Aerospace Engineering from Pennsylvania State University and a Master of Engineering in Energy from École Centrale in France.

Matt MacKinnon, Founder and President, UAS Inc

Matt MacKinnon is the founder and President of Unmanned Aerial Services Inc. (UAS Inc), a Sudbury, Ontario-based company that has been a global leader in providing remote inspection services for indoor industrial and underground mining locations since its establishment in 2017.

Dedicated to solving challenges related to inspections in GPS-denied environments like underground mines, Matt led UAS Inc to become an early adopter of pioneering technologies such as the Elios and Emesent systems. While he did not develop these technologies, his visionary application of them in the underground mining industry has set new standards for safety and efficiency.

Beyond his business leadership, Matt has also garnered recognition within industry-specific forums and publications for his contributions to the field of unmanned aerial inspections. His focus on innovation and technical excellence has made UAS Inc a significant player in the mining robotics and technical development sectors.

Scott Ferguson, Senior Cave Engineer, Freeport-McMoRan

Scott Ferguson is the Senior Cave Engineer and UAS Site Lead for the Henderson Mine in Empire, Colorado. With over a decade of experience in the mining and technology sectors, he manages the production, drilling and blasting, and elements of the geomechanical engineering teams to leverage and synchronize the varied expertise his team offers into a consolidated, synergistic cave management group. As UAS site lead, he spearheads one of FMI’s UAS Center’s for Excellence, focusing on new and novel uses for UAS technologies in GPS-denied environments.



Scott Howe, Editorial Analyst, Commercial UAV News

Scott Howe is the Editorial Analyst for Commercial UAV News. He is a writer and editor with more than 35 years of experience working in fields such as higher education, healthcare, finance, and insurance. A native of Massachusetts, he currently lives in Portland, Maine.