Contractors hire land surveyors to ensure that the building process will proceed unimpeded by unexpected factors related to the environment, property boundaries, land contour, and more. One of the most effective surveying techniques involves the use of unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs). This technology allows surveyors to get a bird’s eye view of an intended construction site so they can determine any potential land-related problems before construction commences.
In part one of this two-part series, our Chattanooga construction lawyers discussed the importance of land surveys before briefly introducing two innovative surveying technologies: LiDar and photogrammetry, which we will explore in-depth in part two.
Aerial LiDAR and Construction
Aerial Light Detection and Ranging (LiDAR) utilizes cutting-edge sensor technology to detect geographic features from the air. This technology allows the surveyor to develop precise 3D maps of an area giving the contractor superior insights about the land they plan to develop. Some of the benefits of LiDAR include:
- LiDAR can analyze your land without limitations. Dense plots of forest, brush, and vegetation don’t bar LiDAR from properly mapping the ground. In fact, LiDAR is arguably the best option for surveying overgrown land.
- LiDAR produces data that can be imported into construction and architectural software. Although comprehensive data collection is important, if you can’t utilize it effectively, it loses some of its value.
- LiDAR makes it easy to develop detailed construction simulations and it improves the efficacy of cost estimation.
Unfortunately, LiDAR is expensive compared to photogrammetry, and it does not create colored (RGB) images, which makes LiDAR maps difficult to read. LiDAR shines when there are environmental interruptions blocking your direct view of the land.
Photogrammetry and Construction
Photogrammetry utilizes multiple still images collected from high-resolution cameras to build comprehensive 2D or 3D land surveys. Unlike LiDAR, photogrammetry can’t see through brush or ground cover, so it’s most commonly used in sparse areas with few obstructions. Despite this rather significant limitation, photogrammetry possesses a few major benefits including:
- Photogrammetry is affordable. Contractors can hire land surveyors to conduct a photogrammetry survey for a reduced cost than a comparable LiDAR survey.
- Photogrammetry is easier to read. Since photogrammetry uses high-resolution, colored images, it’s significantly easier to decipher a survey visually as compared to LiDAR images which are reminiscent of the images produced by X-rays or thermography.
When you need to survey a large plot of land with minimal obstructions, photogrammetry is an effective, affordable method that results in clear, colorful images. If you are working with a limited budget, photogrammetry is your ideal solution for your surveying needs.
Disclaimer: The information contained in this article is for general educational information only. This information does not constitute legal advice, is not intended to constitute legal advice, nor should it be relied upon as legal advice for your specific factual pattern or situation.