Unmanned aerial systems (UAS) are having a significant impact on many industries including surveying, mapping and engineering. As the UAS market evolves, many issues arise around the evolution of hardware and sensor platforms, data processing software, O&M best practices, and regulatory frameworks. Our clients are regularly posing questions to us about what is happening with this technology, what is really feasible, and where it’s all going. To help address those questions our UAS team compiled this Q&A.
Providing SIM for the Wisconsin DOT
Continental Mapping recently completed a 3D modeling project for the Wisconsin Department of Transportation (WisDOT) using terrestrial lidar. In addition to mapping services, Continental Mapping staff worked with WisDOT to develop standards and applications for this new technology and aid in site information modeling (SIM) and other applications.
Stringless paving is a hallmark for maximizing taxpayer investment through new-found efficiency. To understand just how financially effective stringless paving is, first you have to understand the precarious nature of the string line paving it replaces. String lines are essentially long lines of thread held up by steaks that are used to set the grade of pavement. By eliminating the use of a string line, contractors save time and money as the string line does not need to be constantly verified due to it getting bumped or moved. Also, dump trucks accessing the paver do not have to back down long stretches of grade between these string lines to get to the paver, which is a safety hazard. Those savings are passed along to the public agency and help address the need for financial effectiveness.
(Sun Prairie, WI)—December, 2013—Continental Mapping Consultants, Inc. was published in the December issue of Professional Surveyor Magazine highlighting an Unmanned Aerial Systems (UAS) project completed by several of its staff and a group of local kids on the autism spectrum. The Taking Autism To The Sky (TATTS) project consisted of working with a group of 8 kids on the autism spectrum to build, learn to fly and complete missions with a UAS. The project culminated in a series of films made by the kids to highlight their experience.
The on-line version of the article can be found here on the Professional Surveyor Magazine web site.
The TATTS Project blog contains lots of video and imagery from the project including hardware specifications and is available here.
Links to several sample images are provided below:
- Base station - showing real-time video to 21" TV and goggles
- Photomosaic of a local farm - 15 aerial images
- Photomosaic of construction site - 18 images taken after hours