What is the best platform for mapping around 300km of highway?

Hi everyone,

I would like to know what you think is the best solution (price/quality/ease of use) for mapping around 300km (180 miles) of a highway??

We need to do photogrammetry of this project and I have suggested the use of a UAV instead of a manned aircraft.

I imagine that we will need a fix wing solution (or solutions) for doing this project but I would like to have further information.

Any information is useful.


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Or as the last post said, do it in 2 hours, rather than a week. I know people don't want to hear this on an unmanned forum, but a lot of remote sensing companies that have both uav and manned photogrammetry capabilities, just end up using the manned or satellite platform every time due to the speed and ease of use to get a pilot and a cessna.

What we don't know is, where is this 300km of highway, at 14000ft in the mountains in Peru, in a war torn area where a manned plane would be shot at, in a country where the government controls the aviation industry requiring big bribes to get a manned plane to do a survey like this.  These are the areas where UAV's have a competitive advantage.

It's funny, I have a skywalker X-8 based on a Pixhawk that is roughly the same size, lighter, gets around those flight times, and even carries a similar camera system (minus the IR). In fact, fully loaded, it even cruises at the same speed, but costs less than $1000, with a launcher. I love the DIY projects for a reason :)

Check out the Lynx UAS at http://swiftradioplanes.com/. Lynx is a 4.6 kg, electric airplane that cruises for 90 minutes with an APS-C camera. Its extremely rugged due to its Kevlar construction.

check out our newest Aeromapper 300, 1.5 hours endurance. You will need svereal flights but it is very reliable, many payloads supported, easy to use, handlaunchable, long range data link and control, and affordable:


despite is has been flying already for many months haven't been officially annouced, which will happen  very soon!

Thanks for the insight! Would you recomend a DIY projecto for something like this?

This is will not be a one time thing... so we are still open to ideas since we will be doing in house work. The manned aircraft is out of the question since the project has to be donde with an UAV. Thanks!!!

Hi Silverzorra,

I will just share my experience here. We have done a project of mapping a 65 sq. km area within a week. The straight line flight was more than 500km. The platform used was skywalker with custom arrangements. If its possible in your location to fly out of sight, you can complete the project within 4 days of flying. Even less if everything is perfect.



Hi Adam,

We cant use manned aircraft for this project and this will be in a country with little control over UAV's, would be at sea level, no security issues for the operator(s).



Thanks! I already sent an email asking for pricing.

Hi Pravin,

Thanks for the insight. Yes, we can fly out of sight. Did you put together the skywalker yourself or it was a RTF solution from a third party?


Can I please ask why a manned aircraft can't be used?

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