GulfSCEI Surveying Technology

9/26/2018 3:46:47 PM

The GulfSCEI Center has access to the senseFly eBee Plus fixed-wing sUAS system, one of the best drones on the market for high-resolution aerial photography.

All flights are digitally-planned, using the latest eMotion 3 software suite. This means our flights can be conducted in any environment, so long as adequate takeoff and landing vectors are available. The flight-path is adjusted in-software to provide ideal routes and optimal imagery for each mission. A lower flight altitude can be used for better ground sampling distance for critical areas of observation.

Using Pix4D software, extremely accurate mosaics and 3D point clouds are generated for the entire survey area from GPS location, depth inference, and feature detection. Each pixel of these mosaics may be aggregated from upwards of 4 to 5 different raw images. These mosaics are fully orthonormalized to correct distortion and the resulting images are suitable for making high-precision measurements.

The GulfSCEI’s robust data center is equipped to process these images and perform a variety of post-processing, machine learning, and predictive tasks.

Features of this setup include:

  • Flight time of up to 59 minutes
  • Multiple sensors available depending on the nature of the target area:
    • The standard S.O.D.A. camera takes 20 MP RBG photographs with a precision of 2.9 cm/px at an altitude of 400 feet
    • The 4-Band Parrot Sequoia sensor is capable of capturing Red Edge and Near IR frequencies
    • The ThermoMAP sensor captures thermal signatures. It can detect thermal differentials down to 0.1 °C with 14 cm/px resolution at an altitude of 250 feet
  • All GulfSCEI pilots are sUAS-rated airmen certified under FAA 107