Data processing services to the public

Much of our time at 3DroneMapping is spent in the office, processing data. We have worked with terabytes of information over the years, seen the development and evolution of software, hardware and the general end requirements of our clients. Because we have been in the industry for such a long time, we have gained valuable experience and have a solid understanding of photogrammetry and GIS routines.

Our office has invested over time in some of the latest and greatest hardware available. These workstations have proved over and over again to be one of our greatest assets as time spent in the office processing thousands of images, LiDAR and GPS data is what we are all about. We have made sure that we are right at the cutting edge of fast multiple core processors, high speed harddrives, high capacity RAM, large GPUs. And then there is the software.

Finding the right software to undertake photogrammetry routines is very difficult. It takes months to evaluate the limitations and highlights of the software. This often comes at a cost as the software needs to be purchased, researched and finally “data driven”. The financial cost as well as time spent on this is very taxing. What we have found is that there is no single offering or suite available that can provide the best option for all cases. Especially when dealing with high accuracy data, the “all-in-one” bundles don’t come close to matching the accuracy and end result that a few good ones do.

Aerial triangulation is best handled by dedicated software. The same goes for orthomosaic generation, pointcloud editing, data conversion and projection. We also know that there is no single setting or procedure for all datasets. Each project has been captured differently in terms of sensor type, topography, terrain, altitude and flight planning. Operators need to be aware of these variances and using experience, apply the model that bests suits the data.

Pointcloud editing is possibly the most important aspect of our work. Here we use interactive tools to determine ground levels, vegetation, buildings, roads. This is known as classification and is crucial when creating a DTM (Digital Terrain Model). DTM is limited to the terrain points only, thus when contours are generated, they are representative of the natural ground levels and exclude features like vegetation, buildings, etc. This is a very time consuming process and requires operators to interactively interrogate the data in 3D to check and edit classifications.

GIS is the final step when exporting our data. Each project has its unique projection, geoid model and even degree of resolution. Some clients prefer us to re-sample their data so that lesser spec’d hardware can read our rich data set. Some prefer their imagery in another format. Others prefer for us to clip, merge or convert their data.

3DroneMapping is now offering our experience, hardware and software capabilities to the public. We have processed over 30 different data sets of aerial imagery over the past 6 months for certain clients and have a dedicated team that handles this. Clients are now find it easier in some circumstances to collect the data themselves but ask us to process the data for them into orthomosaics, classified pointclouds, etc. Often the client has time restrictions, or inadequate hardware / software to process data correctly. 

Data collected by our clients often arrives via harddrive or is uploaded to our FTP site(not recommend for datasets over 25gb) and processed on one of our workstations. Final products are delivered in whatever method is convenient. A typical 1000ha rural location with 50% vegetation cover can be processed as 4cm/pixel and 0.5m vertical contours in 3.5 days.

For more information, please contact [email protected]