Use Case_Gather precise LIDAR data under dense vegetation for risk analytics, Ghana

Use Case_Gather precise LIDAR data under dense vegetation for risk analytics, Ghana

Use Case - Precise large scale terrain mapping under tropical rain forest with the Qube 240 LiDAR and Trinity F90+ UAV

Creation of a Digital Terrain Model using a LiDAR sensor in cooperation with Rocketmine

New ways for aerial LiDAR mapping – the Qube 240 with the Trinity F90+ UAV

Light Ranging and Detection (LiDAR) sensors, partly traded as the key technology of the future for autonomous driving are also the first choice for highly productive survey tasks.

Until recently, LiDAR payloads were hardly affordable for SMEs due to their high cost. This is exactly where Quantum-Systems comes in and offers a geomatics grade LiDAR scanner integrated into the payload compartment of the Trinity F90+ drone including software package without having to compromise on data quality.

The Trinity F90+ in combination with the Qube 240 LiDAR payload offers 1 hour of flight time and safe VTOL (Vertical Take-Off & Landing). The LiDAR sensor and the long flight time are key for a positive ROI.
In comparison, LiDAR missions by manned aviation are on average 10x more expensive and considerably less accurate.

The Qube 240 LiDAR Payload with GPS Dome Antenna. It  provides essential information for surveying and mapping by generating an accurate 3D image of the process environment through 240,000 distance measurements per second.

In cooperation with

Where did we fly?

The project location was approximately 110 km northwest of the capital of Ghana in the Birmi region. The whole mission area was located in the tropical rainforest.

Use Case Location

Why using the Quantum-Systems solution for this mission?

We partnered with Rocketmine to pioneer new solutions for mapping. Rocketmine is a global drone data service provider, offering full turnkey drone solutions across continents for multiple sectors including mining, agriculture, engineering, renewables, security, and medical to name a few.

The task was to survey an area of 6,500 hectares in an equatorial jungle environment in Ghana / West Africa. This extreme operational setting provided an ideal testbed for the use of our Trinity F90+ VTOL drone solution in combination with the Qube 240 LiDAR payload.

The dense jungle environment is problematic for conventional photogrammetric survey techniques and RGB sensors, as they cannot penetrate the various tree layers of the terrain.

As the first active deployment of a Quantum-Systems drone solution in the region, Rocketmines’ team was able to pioneer the use of this groundbreaking technology and quickly gather relevant data to accomplish the mission goals.

Mapping 65 sqkm with a LiDAR Sensor is possible within 4 days with a UAV

Here you can see a part of the primeval forest to be captured at the first starting point. It is almost impenetrable jungle, at least to capture it with conventional surveying methods to the centimeter. To acquire useful data in this area, the LiDAR sensor must penetrate several vegetation layers.  

The mission goals:

  • Create digital orthophotos for the area of interest (AOI) à 65 sqkm in total
  • Create a digital terrain model (DTM) for the AOI
  • Mark contour lines with 0.5m isohypses
  • Create a watershed simulation with the collected data

    Mission challenges

    • Large areas with no take-off and landing sites in the center of the AOI
    • Hot and humid climate conditions (40° – 45°C)
    • Most part of the AOI is covered with dense tropical rain forest.

    The Quantum-Systems Trinity F90+ with the Qube 240 LiDAR Payload during the Project in Ghana.  60 minutes of flight time with one charge are possible. Thanks to electric vertical take-off and landing capabilities handling in demanding environments is a breeze.

    The benefits of a sUAS for mapping missions

    By using the Trinity F90+ it was possible to survey the extensive area within a short time. Compared to a copter drone as the carrying platform, which has significantly less endurance, the flight time of 60 minutes is the decisive advantage. In combination with the vertical take-off capability, there are also no restrictions regarding the take-off and landing area.

    The use of manned solutions would not only have been more expensive by a factor of 10 due to the increased logistical requirements but would also have been significantly worse in terms of data quality due to an accuracy of only 20 cm horizontally and 10 cm vertically.

    The data the LiDAR Sensor delivered offers a deep insight into the local environment in terms of elevation. The complete point cloud vs the reduced ground-level data is shown in the slider above.

    How we performed the mission

    The area was mapped with a total of 20 flights (300-350ha per flight) in 100-120  meters flight altitude.

    The final data had an overall accuracy of 2.32 cm in elevation. With the Qube 240 LiDAR payload,
    we were able to record a total of 11,1 billion points and 2,6 billion ground points from the 6,00 hectares surveyed. After post-processing, we were able to acquire 40 ground points per square meter under dense vegetation.

    A digital terrain model was created using this data set, including a watershed simulation to get situational awareness.

    Data Processing was done with Applanix PosPac and YellowScan Cloudstation to process terrain models.

    The slider shows the entire region with optional 0.5 m and 2 m contour lines to make a final estimate in terms of surface water distribution.

    The captured data enables sustainable management, as well as preventive protective measures for local emergencies. Due to the manageable effort, the data acquisition in such difficult terrain is a suitable instrument to guarantee high data quality and information for decision making with minimal investment.

    Mapping 6500ha in 20 flights is incredible and a real optimization in terms of planning efforts!  The Trinity F90+ & Qube 240 Combo is a beast of a setup!””

    Raphael Atimbire

    Drone Operations Manager, Rocketmine / Ghana

    Recap on what we learned

    R

    Use state of the art hard- and software

    Having an effective and reliable system consisting of a fixed-wing VTOL UAV and an accurate LiDAR solution is key to successful data gathering in a difficult mission setting.

    R

    You need real experts

    To have the necessary equipment ready is just one piece of the puzzle. Without experts in flight planning and data processing, the results would not have been possible. Shoutout to Rocketmines’ crew for your great work and local authorities for your support!

     

    R

    Better results compared to available competitors

    Compared to other available systems the quality of the data, time, and cost savings have been substantial!

    The project was also featured in a webinar. Fill out the form below and gain access to the recording!

    Thank you for your interest in our products & services. Given the number of inquiries, please note that the screening and evaluation of your inquiry will be conducted on the basis of the information provided. You are therefore kindly requested to provide complete and accurate information pertaining, but not limited to envisaged mission profile(s), geographical area of operation, end-user information, choice of sensor(s), and other relevant operational requirements in the respective field. Fields marked with an * are mandatory.

    Use Case_Counting over 4,000 Pelican Nests in 30 Minutes on Queen Bess Island, Louisiana, USA

    Use Case_Counting over 4,000 Pelican Nests in 30 Minutes on Queen Bess Island, Louisiana, USA

    Use Case - Counting Over 4,000 Pelican Nests in 30 Minutes on Queen Bess Island, Louisiana, USA

    University of Louisiana at Lafayette

    The setting

    The goal of the mission was to automate the process of counting pelican nests on Queen Bess Island, Louisiana, USA.

    The Trinity F90+ drone was used to map the island off of coastal Louisiana that is critically important for brown pelicans, and other seabird, nesting. Traditional surveys at the islands are done on foot and with airplanes, but the Nelson Ecosystem Lab at the University of Louisiana at Lafayette wanted to apply new count methods and automate the counting process. The Trinity platform allows the researchers to access these remote islands and count the pelican nests while avoiding disturbing these delicate habitats.

     

    The individual mission challenges were:

    • Flying at an altitude that avoids any disturbance to the birds and achieve a pixel size of less than 2.5 cm.
    • Mapping the entire island, about 17 ha, creating a mosaic in Pix4D
    • Counting nests using object-based image analysis in eCognition and pairing it with on the ground survival and breeding information from other bird researchers

    Use Case Location

    The story of pelicans and Queen Bess Island

    The island was recently restored by the State of Louisiana because it was rapidly eroding. Louisiana loses lots of marshes each year, but this island is very important for pelicans (the official state bird) and supports 15-20% of all nests in the entire state. The restoration project was a big deal and cost about 19 million USD funded by BP oil spill money.

    6,600 pelican nests were estimated in 2018 when only 2 out of 15 hectares were habitable for nesting, prior to restoration. Most of the island was becoming open water and limiting the nesting area. Sand was pumped in, rock barriers installed, and new vegetation planted to keep the island in place. Restoration is an important research topic in Louisiana because it occurs on such a large, coast wide scale, and it is difficult to predict how animals might respond to construction.

     

     

    Drones combined with object-based image analysis are the tools of choice for counting pelican nests

    Officials were excited to see pelicans using the island earlier in spring 2020 which made The University of Louisiana decide it was a priority for a drone survey. Ph.D. James Nelson and J. Mason Harris from the University of Louisiana at Lafayette, Department of Biology, chose a Quantum-Systems Trinity F90+ drone with Sony UMC Camera to count nests using object-based image analysis in eCognition. They came up with 4,320 nests on their first count. J. Nelson and J. Harris were working with pelican researchers to examine and double-check the numbers.

    “The Trinity’s speed and accuracy is simply not matched by any other UAS platform we have ever worked with.”

    James Nelson Ph.D.

    Endowed Professor of Environmental Biology, University of Louisiana at Lafayette, Department of Biology

    The mission was a success because of proper planning, execution, and minimal disturbance to wildlife. The UAV’s mapping capabilities allowed the researchers to study the site quickly and more effectively. The real value of the data is how it can be paired with on the ground survival and breeding information from other bird researchers to test small-scale patterns over the entire island using drone surveying.

    The object-based image analysis approach helped make the counts more efficient. Nests were outlined very well using eCognition’s segmentation algorithms. After figuring out the appropriate scale and parameters, John M. Harris was able to effectively delineate nests from other objects and identify them based on spectral and geometric features. Since some nesting areas were more densely populated than others, he had to use multiple rounds of segmentation and classification. The object-based approach increased accuracy because different sections of the island could be classified using slightly different methods.

    Contact:

    James Nelson Ph.D.

    Endowed Professor of Environmental Biology

    Department of Biology
    University of Louisiana at Lafayette
    PO Box 43602
    Lafayette, LA 70504

    J. Mason Harris

    Sea Grant Graduate Research Scholar

    Ecosystems Ecology Lab
    University of Louisiana at Lafayette

    Facts & Figures

    Altitude:
    80 m AGL | 262.5 ft

    Flight time:
    30 min

    Resolution

    GSD:
    2.5 cm | 0.98 inch

    Camera

    Camera:
    Sony UMC-R10C

    Area

    Area:
    17,4 ha | 43 acres

    Wind

    Wind:
    5 m/s | 9.7 kn

    Pictures taken

    Pictures:
    1302

    Overlap

    Overlap:
    Side 80 %
    Forward 60 %

    How can we help you with your application? Send us a message!

    We'd love to hear from you!

    Thank you for your interest in our products. Given the number of inquiries, please note that the screening and evaluation of your inquiry will be conducted on the basis of the information provided. You are therefore kindly requested to provide complete and accurate information pertaining, but not limited to envisaged mission profile(s), geographical area of operation, end-user information, choice of sensor(s), and other relevant operational requirements in the respective fields.

    A reply to an inquiry can only be expected if the required fields in the above form are answered. We will reply as soon as reasonably possible and kindly ask for your understanding.

    For more information on how Quantum-Systems processes your data, please see our privacy policy:
    https://www.quantum-systems.com/privacy-policy/

    UseCase_Aerial mapping – Post Cyclone Harold damage assessment

    UseCase_Aerial mapping – Post Cyclone Harold damage assessment

    Use Case - Aerial mapping – Post Cyclone Harold Damage assessment

    Drone Services Fiji / Fiji

    The setting

    Name: Mikhael Pinto Costa
    Client: GLOBHE Drones AB

    After Cyclone Harold hit Fiji, the Trinity UAV provided excellent aerial mapping imagery to assist UN relief efforts to locate damaged and destroyed rooftops, fallen trees, blocked roads, and river flooding.

    Facts & Figures

    Altitude:
    120 m AGL

    Flight time:
    45 min

    Resolution

    GSD:
    3,0 cm/pixel / 1.2 in

    Camera

    Camera:
    Sony UMC-R10C 16mm

    Area

    Area:
    158 ha / 390 acres

    Wind

    Wind:
    5,3 m/s / 10.3 kn

    Pictures taken

    Pictures:
    958

    Overlap

    Overlap:
    Side 70 %
    Forward 70 %

    How can we help you with your application? Send us a message!

    We'd love to hear from you!

    Thank you for your interest in our products. Given the number of inquiries, please note that the screening and evaluation of your inquiry will be conducted on the basis of the information provided. You are therefore kindly requested to provide complete and accurate information pertaining, but not limited to envisaged mission profile(s), geographical area of operation, end-user information, choice of sensor(s), and other relevant operational requirements in the respective fields.

    A reply to an inquiry can only be expected if the required fields in the above form are answered. We will reply as soon as reasonably possible and kindly ask for your understanding.

    For more information on how Quantum-Systems processes your data, please see our privacy policy:
    https://www.quantum-systems.com/privacy-policy/

    UseCase_Survey & mapping at Valkaria Airport X59 – Sky Flight Robotics – FL / USA

    UseCase_Survey & mapping at Valkaria Airport X59 – Sky Flight Robotics – FL / USA

    Use Case - Survey & mapping at Valkaria Airport X59

    Sky Flight Robotics / FL / USA

    The setting

    Survey & Mapping project with TRINITY at Valkaria Airport X59 (Florida USA)

    Sky Flight Robotics (James Peters) used Quantum-Systems Trinity with a Sony UMC camera to map the Valkaria Airport (FL) with only one flight. The UAV captured 1212 images within 50 minutes. The data has been processed with Agisoft Photoscan Pro and the result (4cm/Pixel Orthoimage) has been provided to the airport manager Steve Borowski the next day.

    Potential of ha/hour mapped

    Facts & Figures

    Altitude:
    125m AGL / 367 ft

    Flight time:
    50 min

    Resolution

    GSD:
    3,3 cm / 1.29 in

    Camera

    Camera:
    Sony UMC-R10C 16mm

    Area

    Area:
    4,18 km² / 418 ha

    Wind

    Wind:
    3-5 m/s / 5.8 – 9.7 kn

    Pictures taken

    Pictures:
    1212

    Overlap

    Overlap:
    Side 80 %
    Forward 40 %

    How can we help you with your application? Send us a message!

    We'd love to hear from you!

    Thank you for your interest in our products. Given the number of inquiries, please note that the screening and evaluation of your inquiry will be conducted on the basis of the information provided. You are therefore kindly requested to provide complete and accurate information pertaining, but not limited to envisaged mission profile(s), geographical area of operation, end-user information, choice of sensor(s), and other relevant operational requirements in the respective fields.

    A reply to an inquiry can only be expected if the required fields in the above form are answered. We will reply as soon as reasonably possible and kindly ask for your understanding.

    For more information on how Quantum-Systems processes your data, please see our privacy policy:
    https://www.quantum-systems.com/privacy-policy/

    UseCase_Mapping an open cast mine – Germany

    UseCase_Mapping an open cast mine – Germany

    Use Case - Mapping an open cast mine

    RWE / Germany

    The setting

    The Garzweiler opencast mine is an opencast lignite mine of RWE Power (until 2003 of RWE Rheinbraun AG) in the northern Rhenish lignite mining district. The mining area extends between the cities of Bedburg, Grevenbroich, Jüchen, Erkelenz and Mönchengladbach in North Rhine-Westphalia / Germany.

    The lignite is deposited in three seams, which together are 40 metres thick on average. The coal lies between 40 and a maximum of 210 meters below the earth’s surface. It is used exclusively for power generation in the nearby power plants.

    To secure the energy supply, the open-cast mine was seamlessly integrated into the 48 square kilometer Garzweiler II connection field at the beginning of 2006. 1.3 billion tons of lignite are stored there, which are to be mined by 2045 and account for around 40% of Rhenish lignite production.

    To expose the lignite, the Garzweiler open-cast mine moves a good 140 million cubic meters of overburden, i.e. loess, gravel and sand, every year. This quantity is mainly used to fill already carburized areas of the opencast mine. Large parts of the Frimmersdorf / Garzweiler extraction field have already been completely recultivated.

    Source: www.rwe.com

    Facts & Figures

    Altitude:
    100 m AGL

    Flight time:
    23 min

    Resolution

    GSD:
    1,3 cm

    Camera

    Camera:
    Sony DSC-RX1RM2

    Area

    Area:
    0,22 km² /22 ha

    Wind

    Wind:
    4 m/s

    Pictures taken

    Pictures:
    543

    Overlap

    Overlap:
    Side 50 %
    Forward 60 %

    How can we help you with your application? Send us a message!

    We'd love to hear from you!

    Thank you for your interest in our products. Given the number of inquiries, please note that the screening and evaluation of your inquiry will be conducted on the basis of the information provided. You are therefore kindly requested to provide complete and accurate information pertaining, but not limited to envisaged mission profile(s), geographical area of operation, end-user information, choice of sensor(s), and other relevant operational requirements in the respective fields.

    A reply to an inquiry can only be expected if the required fields in the above form are answered. We will reply as soon as reasonably possible and kindly ask for your understanding.

    For more information on how Quantum-Systems processes your data, please see our privacy policy:
    https://www.quantum-systems.com/privacy-policy/

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