‚ÄčIntroduction to Drone technology
Upland Environmental Ltd utilizes a Drone for collecting aerial images of project sites.  These images are taken to the office for processing with photogrammetry software to produce an orthophoto image and point cloud data.  The orthophoto is georeferenced and scaled to a coordinates system so it can be utilized in any mapping/GIS software.  The point cloud data is utilized to create a DSM (Digital surface Model) and/or DTM (Digital Terrain Model)  The surface model includes all surface objects including buildings and vegetation.  The terrain model filters out buildings and vegetation to provide a ground model only excluding objects and vegetation.  From the point cloud data, a three dimensional perspective can also be created for a more realistic view of a given site if needed.

With these Drone aerial surveying products, we have the most up to date site information that provides us with the ability to calculate volumes and complete linear measurements, coordinates, elevations, profiles, contours and create line work. These measurements are key to our success in making sound decisions and providing our clients and government with some of the most advanced information available today.  


Methodology
Upland utilizes an industrial quadcopter that has the ability to take-off and land in very tight areas without limitations to ground conditions.  The Drone flies on GPS and has an on-board high precision PPK GPS system. This system provides us the ability to post process our data coordinates to a very high degree of accuracy ranging from (2cm to 8cm).  In some instances where a higher degree of accuracy is required we utilizes GCP (Ground Control Points) and check points that are precisely surveyed prior to flight with survey grade RTK equipment. These points give us the ability to fine tune the positions to an even higher degree of accuracy and give us a measurable way to assure that our 
product meats the absolute accuracy that may be required on some projects.   By utilizing such technology and workflow we provide our clients with the assurance of high quality georeferenced surface models and orthophotos.  


Compliance

Upland Environmental Ltd is fully licensed, certified and insured to operate a Drone within the province of Alberta. Normand Menard, the Pilot in Command holds a Pilot Certificate with Transport Canada to leagally operate a Drone, as well,  our Drone is  registered with Transport Canada giving us the ability to operate in various airspaces.  Upland carries $1,000,000 Drone liability insurance coverage.  We have also acquired the necessary Drone Ground School Training for piloting the unmanned air vehicle systems.



Summary
Drone imagery coupled with photogrammetry is a very cost effective way to capture the most up to date aerial and topographic information of a site.  This technology is becoming very popular in all types of industries around the world including mining, gravel and forest industries.  The key to making Drones and photogrammetry successful and effective is by utilizing sound practices, good equipment and understanding its limitations.  Here at Upland we focus on providing quality accurate data to our clients. 

Digital Surface Model From UAV Photogrammetry

Orthophoto From UAV Photogrammetry

Drone Aerial Surveying & Mapping