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Using a unique processing method our LiDAR surveying system is able to match LiDAR measurements being collected at +600,000 times a second with differential GPS and IMU data and reference this to the World Geodetic System in real-time
THE CHALLENGE

Match inertial measurement data with LiDAR measurements in the World Reference Frame as they are collected to generate a usable point cloud at survey completion

THE SOLUTION

Use a unique processing technology to facilitate matching 360,000 LiDAR measurements per second to IMU and dual GPS data in the form of a LAS point cloud file

INTRODUCTION

With our significant involvement in the UAV industry, Robotic Systems was aware of the growing potential for drones in land surveying and mapping. However, the current UAV based surveying technology involved inaccurate photogrammetry or LiDAR surveying that requires data to often be uploaded to cloud processing services for matching.

This process to obtain reviewable data can often take days including lengthy upload/download times due to large file sizes. The data collected off these devices are in the area of 40gb/hr or +200gb/day as they collect hundreds of thousands of LiDAR measurements per second as well as detailed IMU data hundreds of times a second.

Under normal circumstances a high-end PC would take at least 40x as long as the survey time to match this data in a readable format. This is obviously commercially unfeasible and so is reduced by using cloud-based processing houses. However, this brings in the issue of upload/download times for large sets of data, a problem here in Australia due to sub-par internet speeds.

Therefor we identified that a new workflow method is needed especially with UAV Surveying becoming increasingly accessible.

HIGH SPEED DATA PROCESSING

Using a unique processing method our LiDAR surveying system is able to match LiDAR measurements being collected at +600,000 times a second with differential GPS and IMU data and reference this to the World Geodetic System in real-time. Giving a usable LAS file of reasonable accuracy at survey completion

To achieve this rate of data generation the mathematics and logic involved in the process have been uniquely ordered and simplified through the LabVIEW software package to suit particular processing technologies in the National Instruments sbRIO 9607.

No other method of processing technology could achieve this rate of data generation in real-time.

Beyond the need for the processing technologies of the sbRIO 9607 its small size and weight make it perfect for a lightweight surveying solution. The 2.5kg payload allows it to be deployed on mid-sized drones making the system even more accessible

POTENTIAL NEW STANDARD IN SURVEYING

Robotic Systems’ LiDAR Surveying System is proven in its ability to generate usable LAS files in real-time, dramatically increasing Surveying workflows. Right at survey completing the onboard removable storage has manageable files ready for volume calculations, distance measurements or general data review in almost any surveying software package

Then from the flight data a small portion, less than 100mb, can be uploaded for post processing increasing the overall LAS file accuracy by almost 100 times. The reprocessing is operated within the survey system at 1/3 of the survey time as the theoretical maximum of the processing method employed has not yet been reached with the live data due to LiDAR only being capable of 600,000pps

Local base stations can also be integrated into the workflow to give higher live data accuracies and this compatibility can be extended to a wide range of base station receivers.

AUTHOR INFORMATION

Adam Amos
Director | Robotic Systems
19/3 Frost Drive
Mayfield West, NSW, 2304
Australia
Tel: (02) 49671072
contact@roboticsystems.com.au

SPECIFICATIONS

FRONT
Payload Front
SIDE
Payload Side
TOP
Payload Top
PHYSICAL PROPERTIES
OVERALL DIMENSION(LWH) 196.5 x 196.5 x 179 mm (7.74 x 7.74 x 7.05 in)
MOUNTING SIZE 168 x 168 mm (6.61 x 6.61 in)(M3)
MOUNT OPTIONS
  • Robotic Systems Titan
  • Matrice 600
  • Vehicle
WEIGHT 2.1kg (4.6lbs)(sensor) + antenna & mount arms
IP RATING 42 (self rated)
ELECTRICAL
INPUT VOLTAGE 18-26V
POWER CONSUMPTION Typical: 19.5W
Peak: 60W
CONNECTIVITY Wired: 10/100 ethernet
Wireless: 2.4/5GHz
NAVIGATION
DUAL ANTENNA SEPERATION 1.5m (5ft)
START-UP TIME Typically 30 seconds (longer if poor satellite reception)
CONSTELLATION SUPPORT
  • GPS L1, L2, L5
  • GLONASS L1, L2
  • GALILEO E1, E5
  • BeiDou B1, B2
SENSOR DETAILS
LASER CLASS Class 1 (eye safe)
FOV 215° Horizontal (30° Vertical)
RETURNS 2
LASER RANGE Up to 100m (330ft)
RECOMMENDED SCANNING HEIGHT 30-40m (100-130ft)
RECOMMENDED SCANNING SPEED 8 m/s (26ft/s)
SCAN RATE 360000 points/s (Dual Reurn)
DATA OPERATION MODES Live on-board processing and LAS file generation
Optional post processing of inertial data for maximum accuracy
OUTPUT FILE FORMAT LAS
OUTPUT MEDIUM DEVICE USB stick
DATA COLLECTION RATE 11 MB/s (39.6 GB/h)