RIEGL solution bridges gap between manned aircraft and UAV geospatial acquisition

RIEGL solution bridges gap between manned aircraft and UAV geospatial acquisition

SurvTech Solutions recently added the RIEGL VPX-1 helicopter pod with integrated RIEGL VUX-16023 into its portfolio of geospatial acquisition tools. Since starting as a land surveying firm in 2004, SurvTech has grown into a full-service geospatial company, providing every type of geospatial service.

The RIEGL VPX-1 is a lightweight and aerodynamic sensor pod designed for helicopter installations that tightly integrates a user’s choice and orientation of Lidar and imaging sensors. Compatible with Meeker Aviation’s rapid disconnect system, the VPX-1 can be installed on many helicopter makes and models for maximum platform flexibility.

With the addition of the RIEGL VPX-1 pod, SurvTech has completed its portfolio of acquisition platforms. It now has a fully equipped fleet of aeroplanes, UAVs, automobiles, boats, ATVs, backpacks (shoulder mounted), push carts, and helicopters. While the firm is already capitalizing on the unique advantages of both manned aircraft and UAV geospatial collection, these platforms have some limitations.

Combining Lidar and imagery sensors

Integrating the helicopter-mounted VPX-1 brings forth an enhanced solution for corridor mapping, effectively bridging the gap between manned aircraft and UAVs. This integration also delivers agile and efficient data collection capabilities, catering to a wide range of geospatial applications.

“We are extremely pleased that SurvTech has chosen our VPX-1 helipod to fulfill their comprehensive platform approach for providing high-resolution and high-precision 3D data to the utility, transportation and survey communities,” said Michael Sitar, airborne division manager at RIEGL USA. “We look forward to supporting SurvTech and their future missions with the VPX-1 helipod and its hybrid Lidar and imagery payload.”

The RIEGL VPX-1 Helicopter Pod was the obvious choice for SurvTech Solutions because of its capabilities. Within the world of smaller Lidar sensors, both in airborne and UAV-based, the manufacturing quality and performance of RIEGL is reaching new heights. The design of this pod paired with the imagery and Lidar requirements needed for SurvTech projects made this an ideal fit. An added bonus was the fact that the VPX-1 is a turn-key solution, and there is no need to patch together cameras and Lidar systems. This holds immense significance because, when conducting Lidar flights from a helicopter, every second translates to valuable currency, and maintenance and integration expenses could be substantial.

Future market outlook

With the decades of experience using Lidar and imagery represented in the SurvTech team, they have the opportunity to excel in the newest technology that is available and strive towards providing their clients with the best of the best. As SurvTech looks to the future, it will require continuing collaboration with RIEGL to provide the hardware and software needed to keep pushing the envelope of geospatial acquisition.

“With the purchase of the RIEGL VPX-1 Helicopter Pod, SurvTech has filled our last aerial geospatial gap. We now can collect aerial data from our aeroplanes, UASs and helicopters,” said David O’Brien, SurvTech Solutions president. “We can offer the aerial geospatial solution that best fits each client’s wants and needs."

Alex Dennison, SurvTech's sensor operator, and Chase Comeaux, the Lidar processing expert, collaborate on integrating the RIEGL VPX-1 Helicopter Pod. This advancement aligns with SurvTech's Total Quality Management (TQM) approach, enhancing their grasp of the technology's intricacies. (Image courtesy: RIEGL/SurvTech)
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