Includes everything you need to perform local area mapping (minus the drone)
Since its inception, AirGon (a wholly owned subsidiary of the GeoCue Group) has focused on high accuracy small unmanned aerial systems (sUAS or drone) for surface mine, industrial and construction site mapping. As our customers have requested more and more services from us, it became evident that their requirements are not always mapping solutions where high network accuracy is required but where relative accuracy can suffice. The prime examples are volumetric analysis and orthophotos for planimetric mapping. These products do not require high network (absolute) vertical accuracy so long as a known scale can be achieved.
Whether you are the owner/operator of a site or a service provider to the site, our BYOD (Bring Your Own Drone) Mapping Kit is intended for just these applications. Rather than acquiring all the necessary components in a piecemeal fashion resulting in a steep learning curve, our BYOD Mapping Kit includes all of the surround components necessary to perform local (relative) accuracy mapping with a user supplied low cost drone such as the Phantom or Inspire.
The BYOD Mapping Kit includes an iOS-hosted mission control program that does a nice job of flying your planned mission. One feature we really like about this software is that it allows automatic continuation of a project following one or more battery changes. This is a huge time saver when projects exceed the typical short flight durations of the Phantoms and Inspires.
There is even a free Viewer available that you can deliver to your customers, allowing them to experience the rich value of point cloud/ortho data.
The BYOD Mapping Kit includes Agisoft PhotoScan Pro, a suite of software used to calibrate the drone camera and to process the raw drone imagery into a 3D point cloud and orthomosaic using a technique from computer vision called Structure from Motion (SfM). AirGon has been reselling, supporting and using PhotoScan for several years. We have evaluated nearly every available SfM package on the market today and find PhotoScan to be the best all-around solution.
LP360 - sUAS
The primary tool in the BYOD Mapping Kit for Quality Checks, data preparation and information extraction is LP360 sUAS. LP360 is our industry standard laser scanning (LIDAR) software and provides a comprehensive collection of tools aimed specifically at construction, mine and industrial site mapping.
One of the first operations that must be performed on the data produced from the PhotoScan SfM operation is validation of horizontal and vertical accuracy as well as removing vertical bias from the data. LP360 contains tools for performing these operations and can export an accuracy report, providing you and/or your customers with assurance that the model will meet project accuracy expectations. Point clouds always contain noise in the form of high and low points, mostly in areas of vegetation and overhead structures. LP360 contains a full range of data cleaning tools, both automated and interactive.
LP360 contains an extensive collection of tools for defining stockpile toes and extracting volumetric information. These situations can be rather complex, involving the use of a priori “bottom” data, pre-defined toes and similar data combinations. LP360 includes advanced automated tools for defining stockpile toes including the exclusion of overhead structures such as conveyors. LP360 has a complete set of modeling tools that allow you to combine point clouds, survey data, bottom data and other disparate constraints into a comprehensive site model.
If you are using project control (for example, a drone equipped with RTK or the use of survey control targets) that allows you to tie models to a datum, then topographic contours can be generated. LP360 supports comprehensive contour generation including the introduction of constraints into the topographic models (“breaklines” and “mass points”) as well as contour smoothing.
LP360 also provides a rich set of tools to create ancillary products such as profiles, cross-sections, rasterized elevation models, hill shade images, exported annotated topographic contours and related products.
The BYOD Mapping Kit includes a trial subscription to AirGon’s cloud hosted data management system, Reckon. Whether you are performing mapping and analysis for your own sites (“owner/operator” deployment) or performing contracted services (“service provider”), Reckon provides you with the platform you need for posting analytic results to a secure distribution site. Reckon includes Reckon Publisher, a desktop tool that allows you to easily post control, ortho images, volumes and reports by date of acquisition. Reckon will also create hill shade images for easy visualization of 3D landscape features such as stockpiles. Reckon supports the dynamic creation of downloadable volumetric reports in both Microsoft Excel format as well as printable pdf reports. Reckon requires no viewer software, providing immediate results to anyone with internet access via PC, tablet or even smart phone devices.
Unlike many other cloud hosted web solutions, Reckon is fully open. You can post results from any type of survey to your Reckon account. Finally, Reckon provides per account, per user security, allowing you to service multiple users with individual, secure portals.
Training and Support
Perhaps the most important aspect of the BYOD Mapping Kit is the training and support you will receive from AirGon. We have been in the mapping technology business (in this and predecessor companies) for the past 30 years. We have performed over 250 UAV site mapping projects for a who’s who collection of mining and industrial sites. Our experience (more like trial by fire!) has informed not only our product development (such as adding the ability to perform volumetrics with only mass points in LP360) but also the various techniques (tricks of the trade, if you will) for achieving the levels of accuracy needed for various project types. The BYOD kit includes introductory web training on the overall process of site mapping. Each month you will be eligible to attend (at no additional cost) one or more free training webinars on various aspects of the mapping flow. You will also have access to our support services for specific questions and issues.
If all you want to do is fly, there are aspects of data processing with which you are not comfortable or you become overloaded with work, you will be able to contract processing to our AirGon Services group. This group has extensive experience with all aspects of drone-based site mapping.