Building a UAV from Scratch

DŠGS asked themselves how to build a UAV and they built one: the FlyEye, it exceeded all goals and expectations. The DŠGS FlyEye is an unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) built from scratch as a data-capturing tool and learning exercise by members of the Slovenian Students of Geodesy Association (DŠGS) at the University of Ljubljana. Having started as just an idea over a year ago, today the FlyEye has exceeded all goals and expectations. The process of learning to build and operate a UAV, and collecting and processing the data, has opened the authors' eyes to new possibilities in the world... (read more)
2015-04-07 01:51:09

RIEGL and Applanix UAV Integration

RIEGL Laser Measurement Systems and Applanix Corporation have announced that the Applanix AP50 GNSS-Inertial sensor system was successfully integrated with RIEGL’s VQ-820-GU topo-bathymetric airborne laser scanner on board the Schiebel CAMCOPTER S-100 UAV. The RIEGL VQ-820-GU is specifically designed to survey sea beds or the grounds of rivers or lakes, and is well suited for combined land and hydrographic airborne survey. The Applanix AP50 GNSS-Inertial system is a GNSS-Inertial sensor plus Inertial Measurement Unit (IMU) in a compact form factor. It features a high-performance precision GNSS receiver and the Applanix IN-Fusion GNSS-Inertial integration technology running on a powerful, dedicated Inertial... (read more)
2013-04-19 10:23:47

UAV Hyperspectral Imager Solution Launched

Leica Geosystems, Aibotix and Headwall Photonics have introduced an integrated high performance airborne sensor solution utilising a hyperspectral imager and the Aibot X6 UAV. The Nano-Hyperspec sensor was optimised in terms of size, weight, and power to enable the aerial acquisition of all spectral and spatial data within the scene of interest. A UAV with integrated Headwall sensor has already been successfully flown and will be presented at this year’s Intergeo in Berlin. Precision agriculture, forestry, geological research, and environmental monitoring are just a few specific application areas that benefit from this airborne hyperspectral imaging solution. Equipped with the hyperspectral... (read more)
2014-10-07 10:22:23

Selecting Cameras for UAV Surveys

A Review of Cameras Popular amongst Aerial Surveyors
With the boom in the use of consumer-grade cameras on unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) for surveying and photogrammetric applications, this article seeks to review a range of different cameras and their critical attributes. Firstly, it establishes the most important considerations when selecting a camera for surveying. Secondly, the authors make a number of recommendations at various price points. While this list is not exhaustive, it is intended to present a line of reasoning that UAV practitioners should consider when selecting a camera for survey purposes. Weight, velocity and flight time Weight is an important consideration for aerial imaging that is often... (read more)
2016-10-06 10:19:18

Maptek Invests in UAV Technology

Maptek has made a significant investment in DroneMetrex, a start-up company from Adelaide, Australia, that has developed technology for aerial photogrammetric mapping from UAVs. The DroneMetrex system enables users to collect vast amounts of digital terrain data and imagery, offering heighting accuracy for rapid assessment, and integration of data into the day-to-day processes in industries such as mining, geospatial and agriculture requiring highly accurate elevation data. DroneMetrex systems will integrate seamlessly with the standard Maptek mine planning Vulcan software system as well as the Eureka regional mapping system. Maptek I-Site 3D laser scanning systems provide a natural complement to the... (read more)
2014-02-24 09:46:19

Aeromao UAV Demonstrates BVLOS Capabilities

An Aeromapper Talon UAV has flown a mission autonomously to a target located 30km away from the operators, while maintaining at all times a strong communications and control link. This demonstrates the great potential for Beyond Visual Line of Sight (BVLOS) operations for applications such as power line and pipeline monitoring, roadways survey, surveillance and wildlife control, and long linear missions in general. The mission was carried out in the Andes Mountains of South America. The location of the flight is situated at 2,800m above sea level and the flight was performed at a cruise altitude of 250m agl. The... (read more)
2017-06-22 11:00:25

UAV-based Mapping: Safety First

While it is positive news for our industry that the use of unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs or ‘drones’) is continuing to increase, the rise has brought with it a key question: how do we ensure that drone users are operating in a safe and law-abiding manner? In recent months, there have been a number of headlines about both illegal operations and the ensuing legislation. Although these news stories have been focused on consumer drone use, we must be mindful that the same issues apply to commercial activity, according to Jean-Thomas Célette – particularly within the geospatial sector as professionals such... (read more)
2019-04-03 11:40:57

UAV Maps Landslide on Czech Highway

Upvision, a UAS company in the Czech Republic, last month used a UAV to map a landslide on the country's D8 highway. The slope landslide buried part of the highway, which is currently under construction, at the village of Litochovice, close to the city of Litomerice, in June 2013 after heavy rainfall. Highway D8 is being built to connect Prague with north-western Czech agglomerations and Saxony in Germany. The route through the Czech Central Mountains has been the subject of disputes since the 1990s. Since then, vehicular traffic to Germany has increased, with more than 10,000 cars a day detouring through the... (read more)
2014-06-02 09:33:02

Professional UAV Images from Smartphone Camera

Lehmann Aviation (France) has launched the LA300, an automatic drone for professional, still aerial images (41MP) and video, for most accurate mapping and surveying. Designed for professional applications, including georeferenced orthomosaics and digital elevation models (DEM), the LA300 achieves professional imaging using the Nokia 1020 smartphone camera. The LA300, a fully automatic drone, sets new standards in aerial imaging. The flight path can be programmed on any Windows 8 tablet, transmitting the data to the drone via Wi-Fi and launching it by hand. After a flight of up to 30 minutes, the aerial robot will automatically land in a chosen... (read more)
2013-07-18 10:30:37

MIT Develops Control Algorithm for UAV Swarms

Swarms of UAVs flying in perfect formation could be one step closer thanks to a control algorithm being created at MIT (Massachusetts Institute of Technology). The complexities involved in controlling teams of moving robots so they do not crash into each other, or indeed into other objects/entities that cross their path, is a challenging problem that continues to keep roboticists busy. But the team of researchers at MIT reckon they have made a breakthrough that could make perfect complex drone formations easier to pull off. They say their decentralised planning algorithm can handle both stationary and moving obstacles, and do so with reduced computational overheads. Why are decentralised control algorithms better than centralised... (read more)
2016-04-26 09:55:49
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