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Dyan Gibbens On Drone Technology In The Oil And Gas Sector

Houston-based Trumbull Unmanned is one of the co-champions of the 2015 Veterans Business Battle, a competition for veteran-led startups.



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Dyan Gibbens
Dyan Gibbens


Oil and gas companies are making increasing use of unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs), better known as “drones,” as a way of tracking potential safety and environmental hazards.

Trumbull Unmanned is a Houston-based firm that helps energy companies adopt UAV technology. Dyan Gibbens is president of Trumbull Unmanned and a graduate of the U.S. Air Force Academy.

She joins Andrew Schneider this week on the Bauer Business Focus.


Lockheed Indago
The Lockheed Indago UAV



Where does the “Trumbull” in Trumbull Unmanned come from?

“The name Trumbull [comes] from John Trumbull, a Revolutionary War hero … He crawled around Boston and sketched the whereabouts of the enemy, and this information made its way to General Washington, who subsequently made him his aide-de-camp.”


How are energy companies making use of drones or UAVs, and what is that technology replacing?

“UAVs are being used in the oil and gas industry to take people out of harm’s way and to reduce the environmental impact. [For example:] flare stack inspections, where instead of using a bucket truck or a ladder truck or building scaffolding, we are flying a UAV for around half an hour to increase safety, reduce exposure, decrease time, and increase savings.”


The 3DR X8 UAV.


Trumbull Unmanned was recently one of two winners of the inaugural Veterans Business Battle at Rice University. How has that experience affected your company?

“Right after the Veterans Business Battle, our phones were ringing off the line. We were receiving several e-mails every hour … It helped get our name out there.”

Andrew Schneider

Andrew Schneider

Politics and Government Reporter

Andrew Schneider is the senior reporter for politics and government at Houston Public Media, NPR's affiliate station in Houston, Texas. In this capacity, he heads the station's coverage of national, state, and local elections. He also reports on major policy issues before the Texas Legislature and county and city governments...

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