Terrain/Surface Mapping


Terrain/Surface Mapping

Investigate and develop precision UAV-based surface and terrain mapping.  The goal is to produce a precise 3D CAD model of a surface/area.

Members: 502
Latest Activity: May 30, 2019

Mission Statement

To develop a platform capable of automated survey of man-made structures, the output of which can be used to create a 3D CAD model of the structure's exterior surfaces.

Discussion Forum

DROTAG - Trigger, Geo Reference and Configure you Sony Alpha with a single part

Started by Paulo Neves. Last reply by Paulo Neves Apr 17, 2018. 4 Replies

Hello all,We at Airborne Projects have been busy testing and getting feedback on our new…Continue

How to mount Sony a6000 to tarot 650

Started by Marcin. Last reply by Cioro Dec 17, 2017. 11 Replies

Hello,I have a quadcopter tarot 650 and I really don`t know how mount camera sony a6000. Main goal is mapping and DTM. I have two soultions:1) something like that …Continue

New setup for 3D Mapping and nadir photogrammetry - help please

Started by ActionDrone. Last reply by Darko Car Nov 1, 2017. 16 Replies

Hi guys,I have a Tarot X6 960 with 3DR Pixhawk FCU.Until now, I made 3D mapping and orthophoto with a DJI Phantom 3 Professional, post-processing the images in Pix4D.I would buy a camera to do mainly…Continue

Phantom 4 pro or Inspire 1 Pro?

Started by Pablo Betancourt Mar 10, 2017. 0 Replies

I'm testing an Inspire 1 Pro with x5 camera and 25mm lens (50mm equivalent) for photogrammetry.It is working fine but due to the 50mm field of view I have to fly at 200m height, and missions take a…Continue

Comment Wall


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Comment by FMS RC airplane on December 25, 2017 at 8:09pm

i like everyone in the group, thanks 

Comment by IronDOME on April 29, 2016 at 2:16am

Hi Trisan


I do not agree 100% with your points.

I have seen LiDAR system that are base on VLP16 which is a $8000 sensor, addition of GNSS and IMU and other few integration aspects suddenly the whole thing becomes 10 times more expensive? It is typical of technology, when something new comes out, it usually overpriced at the beginning.


With rights to flight altitude, I'm not sure which country you are referring. But if you are from the US the FAA provides 500feet AGL as maximum flight altitude, so the 300 feet you are referring to is not really an advantage as you have tried to put. Because there are many cases when I have does my flight in remote places in Africa and I made justification to fly up to 1200feet and it always been accepted because it is unknown in those remote places there is almost no air traffic and if there would nothing would be flying anything below 10k feet. In situations like this I would not be able to take advantage of that.



Comment by Tristan on April 29, 2016 at 12:58am

Hi IronDome,

I agree that lidar systems are expensive. However it not only includes the scanner, but also high grade GNSS and IMU, and software to get accurate survey a few minutes after flight.

Flying as high is possible is efficient to cover larger areas, but at the same time UAV regulation often limits the flying altitude to 100m, line of sight, which is suited for small sensors.

All the best,

Comment by IronDOME on April 28, 2016 at 9:11am


People know about the LiDAR units yours and others. The main problem is the cost. It at the moment really hard to justify the investment especially for most of us who are small businesses. For large corporations, it may not be a problem.

I have looked at many different LiDAR sensor options nothing is below 75kUSD. The cheaper once have smaller range 50 to 100m, which makes it not cost effective as you have to fly pretty low, so covering large areas can be challenging.


Comment by Tristan on April 28, 2016 at 6:47am


We are producing Lidar mapping payloads (< 2 kg) since a few years.

Big advantage compare to photogrammetry is that it can see and map the ground below vegetation.

More infos here : http://www.yellowscan.fr

Comment by MarioSpeedwagon on April 10, 2016 at 6:25pm

Has anyone been able to get vector layers or markers from a mapbox map to actually display on your mapbox map in tower? 

I have a mapbox project with raster layers that DO display over the top of the basemap, but any markers or .kml, .shp files will not display in tower, but they will display in the browser. 

Pretty damn frustrating. 

Comment by whynotflydisquad on March 12, 2016 at 8:35am

THANK YOU Michael !

Comment by Michael Oborne on March 11, 2016 at 10:34pm

put an ROI as the first point, at the center of the building, then use the wp circle like you already did

Comment by whynotflydisquad on March 11, 2016 at 8:54pm

i want to map this building how can i make the front of the multi rotor face inward to capture images of the building ?

Comment by Justin H. on December 3, 2015 at 9:28am

Captured well over 200 acres of usable data on this one.


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