Points & Pixels

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Ground Control Points Are Now Available in 3DR Site Scan
3DR, makers of Site Scan, the leading drone data platform for engineering and construction, today announced that ground control points are now available to be processed in Site Scan.

This is a major development of how drone imagery is turned into actionable data: with this release, Site Scan is now the only end-to-end drone data platform with cloud processing for ground control points.

Ground control points (GCP’s) are easily-identifiable markers on the ground of a jobsite that can be used to `georeference’ drone maps and models. This makes it possible to increase the absolute accuracy of drone data and create better deliverables like orthomosaics, point clouds, and more.

Processing with GCP’s in Site Scan offers industry-leading precision: while flying at 100 feet with the Site Scan Sony R10C and using GCP’s, customers can achieve horizontal accuracy of 0.25 inches and vertical accuracy down to 0.25 inches.

Also New in Site Scan: Custom Coordinate Reference Systems
As part of this launch, 3DR is also introducing Lightning, the fastest and easiest ground control point workflow on the market. With Lightning’s intuitive user experience, Site Scan users can enter and tag GCP’s 5X faster than alternative workflows. Instead of having to work with slow, inefficient GCP processes, Lightning makes it easy to create deliverables that Site Scan customersand their clientswill love.

Many of our customersfrom surveyors to architects, engineers to contractorswork in custom coordinate systems in their projects. In order to help you improve accuracy and comply with the standards set for your jobsite, we’re excited to introduce custom coordinate reference systems in Site Scan.

Custom coordinate reference systems (Custom CRS) are perfect for those of you who don’t use a common system (like EPSG codes) on certain projects. Now, you can georeference your drone maps and models with whatever coordinate system you prefer: all you have to do is select two ground control pointswhich are now available in Site Scanand use them as the basis for your coordinates.

This helps ensure that your Site Scan deliverableslike orthomosaics, point clouds, and morecan be used seamlessly by your clients and different stakeholders throughout your project.

If you don’t need to use a custom CRS, Site Scan also offers over 5,000 global coordinates based on EPSG codes, ensuring that you can accurately georeference your drone data on jobsites across the world.

3DR makes drone technology easily accessible to the construction industry for use in data analysis, 3D modeling and more. 3DR’s flagship product, Site Scan, is a complete drone-to app-to cloud system that makes it safer and easier than ever for enterprise and commercial users to collect and process aerial data, perform inspections and improve business operations. For more information on 3DR, please visit 3DR.com.

MAPPS Member Firms Provide Geospatial Data and Services for Hurricane Harvey Responses and Recovery
MAPPS, the national association of private sector geospatial firms, is pleased to announce that several of its member firms are assisting with response and recovery activities in Texas and other locations affected by Hurricane Harvey, providing aerial imagery, surveying, mapping and other valuable data and services.

"In all aspects of emergency management, geospatial data and tools have the potential to help save lives, limit damage, and reduce the costs of dealing with emergencies," the National Research Council, Natioanl Academy of Sciences found in a 2007 report, Successful Response Starts with a Map: Improving Geospatial Support for Disaster Management

"Numerous MAPPS member firms are providing valuable services to help our fellow citizens and assist first responders. Geospatial data collected on the ground and in the air through manned aircraft, drones, and satellites are helping with rescue, recovery, repair, response, and economic revival," said MAPPS Executive Director John Palatiello. "A quick data call to our membership found these are just a few of the many examples of the private geospatial profession making technical and professional assistance available":

TerraSond, Ltd, based in Palmer, Alaska, with offices in Houston and Corpus Christi, Texas, is actively surveying numerous ports and harbor entrances along the Texas coast. Working for government agencies such as the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers and the Coast Guard, Terrasond is performing ocean-bottom hydrographic surveys to ensure ports can be safely reopened for marine traffic as soon as possible and prevent shipping accidents due to debris. The firm also has multiple crews and vessels servicing private dock owners and offshore pipeline infrastructure for oil and gas companies.

Woolpert, headquartered in Dayton, Ohio, is engaged in a pro bono activity, collecting 1-foot orthoimagery (rectified aerial photography) across Houston and Harris County, and will be uploading processed data to the firm’s disaster relief website, pairing it with previously collected orthoimagery for change detection analysis, and making these maps available to the public via their website and an app in the coming days.

Surdex Corporation of Chesterfield, Missouri is serving several municipal governments in the greater metropolitan Houston area to collect four-band, one-foot pixel digital orthophotography over a 10,000 square mile area to allow quick access to the imagery for recovery efforts and disaster management.

Surveying and Mapping, LLC (SAM) of Austin, Texas has deployed 4 unmanned aircraft systems (UAS) or "drone" crews and 2 manned helicopters for assessment and recovery efforts in support of electric utilities and oil and gas companies.

GeoCue Group Inc., Madison, Alabama, is standing up an Amazon Web Service (AWS) web site with the most recent Harris County, Texas elevation data through existing Light Detection and Ranging (LIDAR) technology and orthophotos that will be accessible at no cost.

The Sanborn Map Company, Colorado Springs, Colorado, Esri, Redlands, California, and Vexcel Imaging US LLC, Centennial, Colorado are part of a consortium providing aerial imagery of Houston and selected Texas coastal cities for use by the first responders, humanitarian organizations, federal and state agencies, and insurance companies.

MAPPS has long advocated the use of geospatial data and services in emergency response. Its input to the 2007 National Academy report resulted in the establishment of contracts for "Remote Sensing to Support Incident Management and Homeland Security" by the Department of Homeland Security, the parent agency to the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), the lead federal agency for disasters and emergency response.

Formed in 1982, MAPPS is the only national association exclusively comprised of private firms in the remote sensing, spatial data and geographic information systems field in the United States. The MAPPS membership spans the entire spectrum of the geospatial community, with more than 120 of the leading firms in the market. Membership includes Member Firms engaged in satellite and airborne remote sensing, surveying, photogrammetry, aerial photography, LIDAR, hydrography, bathymetry, charting, aerial and satellite image processing, GPS, and GIS data collection and conversion services. MAPPS also includes Associate Member Firms, which are companies that provide hardware, software, products and services to the geospatial profession in the United States and other firms from around the world. Independent Consultant Members are sole proprietors engaged in consulting in or to the geospatial profession, or provides a consulting service of interest to the geospatial profession. MAPPS provides its member firms opportunities for networking and developing business-to-business relationships, information sharing, education, public policy advocacy, market growth, and professional development and image enhancement. For more information on MAPPS, please visit www.MAPPS.org.

Referral List Now Online of Professionals Certified in the Use of the Level of Accuracy (LOA) Specification V.2.0
The U.S. Institute of Building Documentation is pleased to announce the online publication of a new resource: a Referral Listing of individuals who have become certified in the use of USIBD’s LOA Specification V.2.0. These individuals have gone through training, and have been tested to become certified in the LOA V.2.0.

Trainings are held online monthly via CD-BIM, and testing is available there as well. The trainings are held on the last Friday of the month. Those who passed the test are certified in the use of the LOA V.2.0, are eligible to be listed on this referral listing.

The Level of Accuracy (LOA) Specification is USIBD’s most often downloaded document. It is designed to help service providers and clients define accuracy needs based on the project. The LOA is now being integrated into popular industry software packages, to increase the ability to validate accuracies comply with those specified using the LOA. Version 2, released last October, includes a heritage overlay into the specification.

The LOA V.2.0 is available for download at no charge from USIBD’s eStore.

USIBD’s Cornerstone Survey #10: Software
In September, the U.S. Institute of Building Documentation (USIBD) will be conducting the 10th installment of their Cornerstone Survey. This comprehensive survey explores valuable subjects including:
Adoption and implementation rates of new technology
Past trends compared to current trends
Opportunity assessments for the upcoming years

This survey, CSR010, is a revisit of the subject from our third Cornerstone Report, which was published in April of 2014. After three years of development and innovation in software in the building documentation fields, we will also compare the results of this survey to those taken in CSR003 in the final report.

The long-term goal of the Cornerstone Reports is to track the changes in the Building Documentation industry by year. The information gathered in this specific survey will be published in our 10th Cornerstone Report in September.

The U.S. Institute of Building Documentation (USIBD) is the first U.S. organization to focus solely on supporting the Building Documentation Industry within the United States. The USIBD is committed to advancing the interests of ALL stakeholder groups: architects, engineers, building owners/operators, service providers, and government agencies, with an interest in Building Documentation. As such, the USIBD strives to provide its members with a network of support and information, comprised of industry partners throughout the U.S. and Internationally. Visit us at: www.usibd.org for more info.

Pointfuse V3 Point Cloud Software Announced
Arithmetica, the company behind Pointfuse point cloud conversion software, has announced the release of Pointfuse V3. Offering a new approach to the processing of point cloud data, Pointfuse V3 produces 3D models that are 1:4 the size of the original point cloud, and streamlines the workflow of the engineering and design professional user. The automatic data conversion process in Pointfuse V3 reduces the cost of projects undertaken by anyone using a 3D reality capture system to supply data for use in 3rd party architecture or engineering design solutions.

Pointfuse V3 builds on the advances already seen in Pointfuse V2, which was launched amidst much acclaim in 2016. Offering `selectable surfaces’, Pointfuse V3 provides a unique approach, classifying objects within a 3D scene. Surfaces within the 3D models produced by Pointfuse V3 can now be identified, grouped and classified. These characteristics bring workflow efficiencies to the project that are not possible when working with point clouds or traditional mesh models.

The technical advances promised in Pointfuse V3 are also supported with some changes to the user interface and data processing algorithms, making the software fasterwith point clouds converted to high fidelity models in a matter of minutes, and simplerwith one parameter, one button processing. Using Pointfuse V3 reduces a firm’s billable project hours and increases the return on investment in 3D laser scanning of photogrammetric capture solutions.

"We have been working on Pointfuse V3 for some time, and the feedback from user testing is that the new functionality and features on offer are eagerly awaited, with some projects even being put on hold until it becomes available in the next few weeks," commented Mark Senior, Business Development Manager at Arithmetica.

Pointfuse is a powerful modeling engine that delivers a fast, precise and flexible way of converting the vast point cloud datasets generated by laser scanners or photogrammetry into high fidelity vector models. Designed for anyone capturing or using point cloud data, Pointfuse uses advanced statistical techniques to create vector models which can then be manipulated using any industry-standard CAD system.

Arithmetica is an innovator in 360-degree imaging solutions and automated laser scanning data processing software. Located at the world famous Shepperton Studios near London, Arithmetica is the company behind SphereVision and Pointfuse. Arithmetica develops groundbreaking software solutions to solve real world scientific, medical and engineering problems. Arithmetica builds on more than thirty years of television and film production to develop software for clients around the world. Arithmetica solutions handle complex data-rich information and are simple and easy to use. Arithmetica’s wide-ranging experience and capabilities include: image analysis and computer vision for industrial and biomedical fields; massively parallel computation; multimedia data compression; data mining and machine learning; Monte-Carlo methods; traffic simulation; mathematical optimization used in conceptual aircraft design; statistical estimation; computational fluid dynamics applied to aerofoil optimization; nonlinear variable demand economic models involving millions of variables; finite element electromagnetic analysis; spherical image processing, and 360-degree video presentation. www.arithmetica.com

A 416Kb PDF of this article as it appeared in the magazine complete with images is available by clicking HERE