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Monday, September 16 • 2:10pm - 2:40pm
Got a Drone - Now What? Mapping with your UAV

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Session 6

The rapid emergence and proliferation of Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAVs) or drones promises to have a profound impact on our lives. If current speculation is to be believed, within a few short years, the skies overhead will be swarming with delivery drones, traffic monitoring drones, and even people-moving drones. For those of us in the mapping industry, this eye-in-the-sky technology is also heralding a seminal shift in how we conduct our business. No longer constrained by the limited availability or expense of up-to-date geospatial datasets, our GIS projects stand to benefit from the on-demand data collection capabilities of this versatile new technology. In this presentation, we will explore several GIS-based workflows that take advantage of UAV-collected data for visualization and analysis. Beginning with the simple process of rendering geotagged drone-collected images in a map view and recreating the flight path of the aircraft as a 3D fly-through visualization, we will subsequently follow the steps for generating a three-dimensional reconstruction of the target area using the principles of photogrammetric analysis. The resulting 3D point cloud is the raw material upon which countless geospatial procedures are based and as an illustration of the inherit potential of this data format, we will follow a series of workflows that utilize this data. After classifying and filtering the points to isolate those representing ground, we will create Digital Terrain Model (DTM) from which we will generate vector contour lines. We will calculate the volume of material in surface anomalies, such as those representing piles of extracted material, and we will compare the surface model to data collected during a previous timeframe for the purpose of detecting and measuring change. UAV hardware is rapidly improving even as the costs continue to drop. For those of us in the geospatial industry, this technology is quickly becoming a valuable and accessible addition to our geospatial toolbox.

Author: Patrick Cunningham


Patrick Cunningham

President, Blue Marble Geographics
Ask me about Global Mapper and low cost GIS.

Monday September 16, 2019 2:10pm - 2:40pm EDT
Newburyport Room