Q/A with TruWeather
“$534 billion a year is the cost of routine weather variance on the US economy, 40% of that is avoidable through our proven weather risk reduction framework we're providing to our customers.”
Hometown: Reston, Virginia
Team Size: 6
Focus: UAV micro-scale weather information and analytics
Explain your team in a few words:
Passionate, highly experienced, and results-oriented professionals
Tell me about your company:
We monitor weather conditions in real time, 365 days a year, across the globe, and when we identify a weather threat before or during a mission, we immediately notify our client of any changes that are going to impact them, so they can react appropriately before it becomes a problem. Our focus is on weather threat surveillance, detection, prediction and alerting.
Our targeted microscale weather information allows our client to answer the question, “Can we execute the mission we need to accomplish?” We provide advanced notice of weather challenges and threats, so our clients can anticipate impacts and change or modify operations to take full advantage of our information. We strive to make all our clients Weather Proactive instead of Weather Reactive.
What problem are you solving?
Regarding the UAV industry, many emerging leaders in the drone industry, such as Sean Cassidy of Amazon Air, have identified that weather is a primary inhibitor/problem to safe and successful operations. For this industry to grow as expected, we need to solve the micro-scale weather detection and prediction challenges. Current government and private weather solutions are unable to provide the detailed micro-scale data, sensing, tracking, and analysis this industry will require for the UAS industry to grow.
The great thing about what we are developing is this technology that's going to be focused on drones, but will easily apply to other sectors for us in the future. It’s about safety, efficiency, and productivity. We want to make sure our provider can get any mission done.
Why are you excited for GENIUS NY?
New York State is uniquely positioned with the governor’s initiative, the investments to the UAS corridor at Griffiss, NUAIR, GENIUS NY, and Centerstate CEO to lead the UAS Industry. We have great universities and educational institutions conducting great weather, IoT, and AI research here in New York.
This region was once known as essentially the hub of industry and innovation. We can be the blueprint for successful UAS operations, not just for New York or the United States, but for the entire world. Our goal is to help innovation emerge, keep it in NYS, and create jobs and prosperity in the region.
First impressions of Syracuse?
Coming to Syracuse has been great for TruWeather because it returns us to our roots. We believe that this is the best place for us. There’s a lot of good happening here and we want to work with the community to resurrect this innovation around weather and create an industry here. We could create a corridor of weather excellence here in Central New York.
What are you most looking forward to while staying in Syracuse?
First, we want TruWeather to buy a luxury box for the Triple-A Mets! Our second goal is to experience the wine culture in this region and get outdoors more. We are happy to be here, the pace of life is a lot slower, but the action and potential is just as high. It feels like returning home in a way, we’ve lived in the region in the past and now we’ve returned.
How many drones do you own?
We don’t own any, but we don’t want to own any and this is why. We are currently developing with partners a unique drone designed to be highly weather tolerant. When the weather is in a critical phase and the data is needed, our partners will fly these drones to better determine how quickly drone pilots can resume or extend their operations when dangerous weather is impacting a region. We’re hoping to bring a drone manufacturing partner into the region to test, develop, and potentially manufacture the weather scout drone of the future, which we will then be able to deploy anywhere in the world without needing to invest in building out expensive infrastructure.
What would you do with the $1 million grand prize?
TruWeather has had early success and we have bootstrapped this success. Winning the $1 million prize would provide TruWeather with a boost to accelerate development of our UAV weather risk platform. The money would not only accelerate our development but allow us to bring differentiating features to market by the end of the year or early 2019. It would also allow us to start creating jobs immediately.
We have hired three Syracuse University software developers and hired a software company to help manage the programmers. With the $1 million prize we would be able to add 2-4 more jobs immediately.
Our product will enable safe, productive, and efficient UAV operations and may enable the FAA in developing the National weather operating standards for all future UAV businesses.