This article was originally published in Geomatics World.
Centimetre accurate 3D computer visualisations are helping architects and townscape planners understand how proposed developments can affect UNESCO World Heritage Sites. The work by MS Environmental, using the latest satellite positioning and data collection technology from Mobile GIS Services (MGISS), has already included projects for UK sites such as the City of Bath, Kew Gardens, Fountains Abbey and Studley Royal and Derwent Valley Mills, as well as Valletta in Malta.
MS Environmental (MSE) is a specialist in verified photomontages, also known as verified views and AVRs, which are computer-generated images designed to show developments in their real-world context. MSE approached MGISS in order to improve both the accuracy and ease of workflow for its field data capture operation. Requiring centimetre positional accuracy for each photomontage, together with a simple to use capture and recording system, MGISS implemented a new generation satellite positioning system including specialist data collection software.
Robust positioning workflow
“The solution that MGISS designed, implemented and continues to support us with has enabled a far more robust positioning workflow and a more efficient and dynamic way of working,” commented Mike Spence, a Verified Photomontage Specialist and Founder of MSE. “We have deployed the system at sites across the UK and further afield in Europe and, without the level of accuracy and the transparent technical methodology, it would have been virtually impossible to fully understand the impact of proposed developments on some of our most important cultural, historical and scientific locations.”
MGISS designed a solution based around the Spectra SP80 GNSS Antenna which uses the unique Z-Blade technology to track all available GNSS (Global Navigation Satellite System) signals to provide the most reliable measurements for the highest possible accuracies. Combined with RTK (Real Time Kinematic) on-demand subscription service from MGISS, MSE successfully captures centimetre accuracies across a range of sites, recording the 3D location in specially designed collection software.
Based in West Yorkshire, MSE specialises in technical photography, 3D modelling, visualisations and verified photomontages for architects, planners, landscape architects, and other professionals working in environmental impact assessment, development planning and consultation. Using the MGISS prescribed solution, MSE has already completed projects at the UNESCO World Heritage City of Bath on behalf of Bath and North East Somerset Council and other World Heritage Sites including the Royal Botanic Gardens at Kew. MSE has also completed projects at Saltaire for the Environment Agency and Fountains Abbey and Studley Royal for The National Trust.
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