UAV-based Mobile Mapping: Potential, Challenges and Outlook

A Cost-effective Alternative to Airborne and Terrestrial Modalities
Accurate representation and 3D reconstruction of the environment using both active and passive remote sensing systems has become essential for non-traditional mapping applications. Due to the excessive cost as well as the required level of technical expertise, the needs of these applications cannot be satisfied by traditional mapping, which is based on dedicated data acquisition systems designed for mapping purposes (e.g. manned airborne and terrestrial mobile mapping systems). Recent advances in hardware and software development have made it possible to conduct accurate 3D mapping without using costly and high-end data acquisition systems. Low-cost digital cameras, laser scanners and navigation systems... (read more)
2017-08-31 09:28:05

A World Class African Land Information System

GIM International Interviews Marcelle Hattingh
In Johannesburg, one of the cities hosting this summer's FIFA World Cup, GIS specialists at the Corporate Geo-Infomatics Directorate are working hard to ensure their city, department and Land Information System (LIS) meet the standards required by a venue for the world's biggest sports event. Director Marcelle Hattingh is leading the team through one of the biggest projects ever. Ambitions are high in Johannesburg, South Africa. The city is working hard to become A World Class African City, a concept aimed at preparing and uplifting South African cities for the FIFA World Cup 2010. In the midst of Jo'burg's Central... (read more)
2010-02-24 03:13:24

Benchmarking Image-based DSM Generation

The Potential for High-quality Airborne Data Collection
In view of the rapid advancement in photogrammetric technology and software for 3D reconstruction, the European Spatial Data Research Organisation (EuroSDR) initiated a benchmark project on image-based generation of Digital Surface Models (DSM). Such a comparative evaluation provides a platform for software developers to demonstrate the potential of their ongoing work. Furthermore, it can help users like National Mapping and Cadastral Agencies responsible for state-wide generation of high-quality DSMs to understand the applicability of such tools while triggering further developments based on their needs. The comparative results from 10 participants presented here provide comprehensive insight into the landscape of dense matching... (read more)
2013-12-30 03:05:25

Improving Land Tenure Security with Low-cost Technologies

its4land
its4land is an EU-financed project to assist Kenya, Rwanda and Ethiopia in mapping land tenure more quickly, cheaply and transparently. It will end in three years’ time; right now, the Africans and Europeans are in the phase of needs assessment. The focus is not on technical requirements, but on operational priorities and managerial context. The first results indicate that low-cost geospatial technologies will be helpful, not least because they also benefit priorities other than improving cadastral services. The its4land project aims to adapt and validate a land-tenure recording suite based on small, fixed-wing unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs or ‘drones’), smart... (read more)
2017-03-31 10:06:19

Geospatial Goes Global

ASPRS Annual Conference
This year’s annual conference of the American Society for Photogrammetry and Remote Sensing (ASPRS) took place from 7th to 11th March, with the theme ‘Geospatial Goes Global: From Your Neighbourhood to the Whole Planet’. Aimed at a wide variety of professionals, the conference included more than four hundred technical and special session presentations and at least seventy poster sessions. Chip Groat, director of the US Geological Survey (USGS), gave the opening keynote address. He discussed the Earth Summit process that is creating agreements amongst space-faring nations of the world to more effectively integrate their Earth observation programmes and exchange the... (read more)
2005-03-21 12:00:00

The Sichuan Earthquake (2)

In May 2008 an earthquake struck the Chinese province of Sichuan. Geo-information experts were able to support emergency response through the immediate provision and analysis of satellite imagery. Infoterra and IRSA-CAS used SAR satellite imagery to rapidly extract accurate information. Both institutions independently chose a very similar approach: visual interpretation of the data and pre-earthquake remote-sensing data for reference.<P> The earthquake destroyed infrastructure and caused a large number of landslides, landslide lakes, dams and debris flows, the quantity, scale and dimensions of which broke historic records. Landslides buried towns and villages, blocked river channels and destroyed road networks, making rescue... (read more)
2008-11-11 12:00:00

ISPRS on Track for Melbourne

GIM International Interviews Orhan Altan
Orhan Altan is president of ISPRS. He gives us a sneak preview of the four-yearly ISPRS Congress which will be held in Melbourne, Australia, this summer. Seeing the potential for tremendous developments in the sector in the years ahead, Altan calls on governments to resist cutting back on sciences such as photogrammetry and remote sensing which, while still developing, are already very important. Back in 2009, you said that ISPRS should prioritise environmental monitoring and sustainable development. Is that still your standpoint?Yes – it is still my standpoint and also that of the ISPRS. In 2008, we established several working... (read more)
2012-04-25 03:51:51

Mapping the World

GIM International Interviews Steve Coast
Steve Coast founded OpenStreetMap in 2004. It's a free, editable map of the world which has been made by people across the globe and allows users to view, edit and use geographical data in a collaborative way from anywhere on the planet. GIM International spoke to him about the project and what lies ahead.   What motivated you to start an ‘open' street map? Back in 2004, Wikipedia had become an extremely successful project and I thought it would be a good idea to apply the same principles to the creation of maps of local areas around the globe. By... (read more)
2012-02-27 03:59:18

Aerial Survey of the Maldives

The April 2008 issue of GIM International (page 11) summarised a project to map the Maldives as an example of how aerial photogrammetry is today applied for mapping large, complex areas. The authors provide further details of the Maldives project, its biggest achievement being first-time-ever 1:25,000 topographic maps of the entire country and 1:1,000 maps of sixteen islands.<P> Republic of Maldives is a chain of islands in the Indian Ocean, spreading north-south over 868km and covering 90,000km2, 99% of which is water. The land area consists of 1,192 islands populated by 280,000 (2001) people. At the turn of the millennium... (read more)
2008-07-09 12:00:00

Underscoring Benefits to Humanity

GIM International interviews Orhan Altan
Professor Orhan Altan, recently appointed president of the ISPRS, the international NGO representing more than a hundred nations and regions across the globe, believes the organisation should prioritise environmental monitoring and sustainable development and so contribute to achieving the Millennium Development Goals. International co-operation, says Altan, for advancement of knowledge, research, development and education in this field, would be boosted by greater publicity for ISPRS scientific achievements and successes and their translation into universally understood language. We asked him about his expectations and dreams as head of one of the most important bodies in the geomatics industry, and the legacy... (read more)
2009-02-27 12:00:00
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