Unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) based mapping in engineering surveys : technical considerations for optimum results

Pytharouli, Stella and Souter, Jock and Tziavou, Olympia (2019) Unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) based mapping in engineering surveys : technical considerations for optimum results. In: 4th Joint International Symposium on Deformation Monitoring, 2019-05-15 - 2019-05-17, Eugenidis Foundation.

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    Abstract

    Due to the wide availability of UAVs and their ease of use, the number of operators with limited surveying and photogrammetric knowledge is constantly increasing. At the same time, there are no easily accessible guidelines available regarding the choice of some of the parameters that greatly affect the quality of photos and consequently the orthomosaic obtained from a UAV e.g. overlap between photos, flight height, light conditions, specifications of the lens and camera, and weather conditions. As a result, if the user is not experienced or does not have a basic knowledge on surveying and photogrammetry (quite common considering the wide range of UAV user backgrounds), a poor quality orthomosaic is produced. This frequently leads to the misconception that a poor outcome is always due to limitations of the UAV technology. In this study, we discuss some of the main technical parameters, such as the effect of topography and UAV orientation on the overlap value, the camera calibration, number of control points and lighting conditions that need to be taken into account in order to utilize UAVs to their maximum potential.