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Mesa County Colorado Obtains Authorization To Operate Trimble's Unmanned Aircraft System

SUNNYVALE, Calif., July 15, 2014 /PRNewswire/ -- Trimble (NASDAQ: TRMB) announced today that Mesa County in Colorado has received a Certificate of Authorization (COA) that will allow the Public Works Department to operate its Trimble® UX5 Aerial Imaging Solution throughout the county. A COA is an authorization from the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) allowing the operation of an unmanned aircraft in a designated area and not for commercial use. The authorization is currently required to legally operate a public unmanned aircraft in the U.S. The COA was granted to the Mesa County Sheriff's Office, who manages the county's unmanned aircraft system (UAS) operations and has been flying systems since 2008.

Mesa County's Public Works chose the Trimble UX5 for a variety of applications including determining volumes and compaction of its county landfill, surveying and monitoring capital improvement projects such as roads and bridges, as well as assist the Mesa County Sheriff's Office or other county departments, as needed. "With the Trimble UX5, Mesa County is one of the first to benefit from a cutting-edge solution that can change how surveyor's collect data," said Frank Kochevar, GPS/Survey Supervisor for Mesa County Public Works. The Trimble UX5 was used by Mesa County Public Works to gather aerial images of the landslide that occurred in Western Colorado in May of this year.

"Trimble's goal is to allow geospatial professionals to quickly and efficiently capture and convert existing field conditions into actionable information for their customers. We are pleased that Mesa County will now be able to apply the Trimble UX5 Aerial Imaging Solution to meet their public works department needs," said Phil Sawarynski, business area director for Trimble's Geospatial Imaging solutions.

Mesa County has received multiple COA's since 2008 from the FAA for public safety purposes. This is the first COA issued to the Mesa County Sheriff's Office that will be used specifically for aerial mapping on surveying and engineering projects, in partnership with the Public Works Department. According to Ben Miller, UAS Program Director for the Mesa County Sherriff's Office and coordinator for all their COA's, "In collaboration with Trimble, Mesa County, Colorado continues to demonstrate that small unmanned aircraft are not just a tool to save lives, but a community asset that can help save its citizens tens of thousands of tax payer dollars."

The Trimble UX5 is an unmanned fixed-wing aircraft targeted at the surveying, oil & gas, mining, environmental and agriculture industries. The system autonomously captures a series of high-resolution images during flight, which is typically up to 50 minutes covering as much as 2.3 square kilometers (approximately 1 square mile) when flying 120 meters (approximately 400 feet) above the ground. Using Trimble Business Center Office software, images are used to easily generate 2D and 3D deliverables such as orthomosaic images, three-dimensional point clouds and contour maps. The Trimble UX5 enables the collection of large amounts of data, often faster than traditional surveying technologies.

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