The high – end small-scale, one-week pilot saw the Housing and Development Board’s drone operator examined the stunning four public housing blocks around Jurong East, July of 2018. 


Kandis Residence

A fresh, sunny morning and you’re so inspired to see your neighbours and the whole community but what makes your day a little bit amazing is seeing those drones almost touching the clouds.

Residents residing in one of those four HDB or Housing  Development Board areas around Jurong East, also have witnessed that amazing object above the grounds.

Credit goes to Housing Board Development that dry runs over small-scale, straight 1-week test in the last week of July to check whether drones can be useful in checking buildings specifically sections which are difficult to reach or some dangerous areas.

Spokesperson of HDB explained that town councils and the agency performs such routine, standard inspections particularly in facades of public housing to ensure excellent condition. The spokesperson further added that it can be done by workers via gondolas.

With that, the purpose of the sophisticated drone pilot over four HDB areas is to perform more intensive inspections, particularly in areas where gondolas will not be effective, the official told via email.

This works also for those owners who are given a deadline to comply with a regular building inspection, specifically those already over a 13 metres taller buildings and having an age of more than 20 years. The said building is a priority to be under inspection every seven years, said, Desmond Lee, the National Development, Second Minister.

HDB said the drone ‘s activity started between July 26, 2018, and August 02, 2018, during an alternate two -hour window, morning and in the afternoon.

Earlier this month, the inspection process gave high regard to the safety of the building, the topmost goal of drone operators.



A group composed of men gathered around an open cover court and setting the drone to take full coverage in the middle area, sealed off with a tape and cones.

Paired with high-end walkie-talkies, three from the team, positioned around outer edges where drone used to hoover. The operator was only a few steps standing behind the drone together with the other two members of the team.

The whole process consumed only a maximum of 15 minutes just for one side of the huge HDB block. It is a bit vague whether the footage captures suffice info or a number of flights visible in the pipeline for that specific day.



The drone is powered by HUS Unmanned Systems and duly licensed to operate by CAAS or Civil Aviation Authority of Singapore, stated HDB during a circular campaign informing residents about the four blocks.

Reliable images were taken by an AI or artificial intelligence system via H3 Zoom.AI similar to HUS, owned by H3 Dynamics Holdings, a  Singapore headquartered parent corporation.

Significantly, the drone captures unlimited images and thus be uploaded directly to the so-called  AI System powered by the cloud, which permits the quickest interpretation and analysis. The system will detect defects via a report yielded automatically every after inspection, with a shorter span of time to boot.

in one published report of July 2018, The Chief technical officer and co-founder of H3 Zoom.AI, Mr Shaun Koo, said, “The remedy is designed to decrease accidents or damages for work-at-height cases and to help keep a well-organized manpower crisis in Singapore.

A good cost-cutting system compared to manual inspection scheme or process, Mr Koo reiterated.

Although the system is sensitive to outer surfaces like watermarks, peeling paints and wall cracks, it has yet no power to detect some corrosion or rust, the report revealed.



Part of the rule, HDB made the occupants aware that the inspection involves images of all parts of the facade and if ever some images would be captured while inspection going on, it’s guaranteed that this images will be protected through that masking software that will make the details blurred.

To make things broader and vivid, the HDB mediator reiterated that the agency stands on ” a strict contractual agreement” along with HUS, that drones are strictly to capture images of the building facade only. The council of the town and HDB utilizes those images provided the occupant’s image be covered up, the spokesperson, explained well.

“Also it is stated under the contractual agreement with HDB partnership, HUS is not given the right to share, reproduce, publish or use any stored footage for whatever purpose it may serve without the full consent of HDB, the spokesperson emphasized.

Mr Sim, a certain shop owner in one of those four HDB areas shared, that he saw a drone flying during an inspection of the building.

In the Mandarin language he conveyed, he had no problem in terms of  concern and use privacy, “I’m a man if they want to get some image, take lor.”

But some testimony he noted, female residents complained in his front on the limit of its usage and issues related to their privacy, particularly when being left alone in the house.

Hervy, a resident also shared no negative feedback in using drones.

“It’s alright because often I am not at home, I am always at the office and my parents are working too,” he shared.

He added that people have different views concerning the use of the drone in the inspection process, he stressed, he had no problem with it as long as one’s privacy is being observed and respected.

Although even the minute details drones gathered from house inspection, it’s 100% sure that it will be scrutinized by the HDB, this week-long amazing pilot is something to cherish in the history of drone community.

The drone operator, Performance Rotors which was collaborated by HUS for the on-site inspection was definitely lavish and a great help especially to the developers.

In one of the Facebook post, July 26th, the initial day for the pilot’s task, the company wrote something that goes, ” Gentleman, drone history unfolds, today you’re part of first Singapore’s drone industry, surpassing what other drone companies have made, I am just so proud and hope you too!”