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Showing most liked content since 04/23/2017 in all areas

  1. 6 points
    Hi guys! Short film of an abandoned factory explore - used the drone inside for a few shots along with the train-yard stuff. Thanks for watching!
  2. 6 points
    I'd like to respond to Joe3223 re the challenges of running a UAS Business.... .....It was supposed to be the greatest thing since the light bulb. I was going to get slammed with business, it was....."a website". However, strictly speaking only for myself, in my experience I'm finding that no matter how sophisticated your web site or clever your SEO expert is, at the end of the day it cannot make personal contact of any kind, provide true traditional customer service or prospect for new business. Unless one thoroughly understands html codes, web crawling, SEO, directory listings and etc., one will always be held hostage by an I. T. employee, notwithstanding the fact, that unless the service one hires is completely trustworthy, there seems to be no way to vet the info they are submitting re the site analytics and performance....it's all in cyberspace and if it's not working out....there's always some cyber rhetoric as to why. For the record, my site does locally occupy the number one google listing slot. And the web team that works on it has impeccable credentials. According to Google analytics we got a 1000 hits last month (August). But no calls. Not one. We can discuss cosmetics, content, SEO and the like but its becoming abundantly clear to me, that "Old School" prospecting and personal contact is the most formidable way to capture new business. Every client we have landed thus far I have literally gone out to a construction site (on a Sunday), shot aerial footage, put together a report consisting of both video and stills, researched how to contact the upper level management of the construction company and sent said report (via drop box) to any exec that may be connected to the project with follow ups until I get some kind of a response, to include going back to the site to find the project manager and follow up or gain more insight as to how to land this elephant. Now that approach can be dangerous. When I go out on a prospecting Safari if you can bag the elephant you can eat for quite some time but sometimes it can land on you when it falls. As in the case of the prospect responding positively but needing a service I can't provide like 3D imaging or thermal searches. Nothing feels worse then having to retreat locked and loaded, knowing the elephant is right there for your best shot. Yes, the "Old School" way is labor intensive and the research can be tedious but the results have been undeniable (for us). In my humble opinion, web sites are a great advertising vehicle but the car can't drive itself. I had to personally put the wrench work in and drive it to the finish line myself. Being "Old School", business 101 always dictated that businesses succeed by employing principles that have proven successful over the test of time. I haven't seen a web site that can take the place of personal contact, prospecting or servicing. If Joe3223 or anyone out there can share some insight and help me cast off my ignorance re the above, I sure would like to hear from ya....I'd certainly appreciate a better way to work smarter and not harder....
  3. 5 points
    We had a mission in downtown Los Angeles and I thought I'd share some stills.
  4. 5 points
    Uploading these really changes the color.
  5. 4 points
    Aloha community, Today, I'm sharing a few images that I'm rather proud of, created by a technique I've been practicing for several months now. Each image you see is comprised of anywhere between 10 to 25 individual photos, merged together like a jigsaw puzzle. In doing this, I'm able to create high resolution images of panoramic scenes that would not fit in a single exposure. These will print clearly up to around 5-8ft on the long edge, depending upon the image. They vary between 20-100mp. All shot on a Phantom 4 Mahalo for viewing, looking forward to feedback and constructive critique! 1 2 3 4
  6. 4 points
    Couldn't resist grabbing a pano the other day on my way home. I never tire of this scene, and conditions were just right for it. Enjoy!
  7. 4 points
    One of my favorite photos, Laguna Salada de Torrevieja in Spain. No editing required. The algae and salt turns the water a pink hue. Shot with a Phantom 4 Pro and I used a Polar Pro ND8 filter.
  8. 4 points
    Greetings, Folks. Just got a Phantom Pro +, learning to fly it and starting to study for the 107 test. Pretty daunting. Interested in Cinematograpy, I'm an experienced aerials cameraman, flown with people you know, Alan. Paul Barth and Al Guthery in Florida, and the Tamboros in LA.
  9. 4 points
    Looks like they changed the restrictions on the number of pictures you can post in a thread. Thanks Alan, I will certainly try not to abuse it. This is actually the subject of our survey. Can't say much about it, but it came out really well.
  10. 4 points
    Aloha UAV'ers! I'm new to this online community, and thought I'd introduce myself, and share a piece of recent work to get started. My name is Jonathon, owner of JBR LIFE Photography, located on the beautiful island of Maui. Primarily, I shoot real estate, although our company also specializes in family beach portrait shoots and the occasional wedding, which we contract out to other photographers. I keep the real estate and commercial media projects for myself The video I'm sharing today is a high-end property located on the south shore. These units sell for around $2-2.5M, which is not really an astronomical figure on this island, but higher than my personal home budget none the less. lol The camera line-up: Canon 7D mkII, Phantom 4, iphone 7+ (yep...4k vid) & GoPro Hero 5. Anyhow, I appreciate your time and views, and look forward to any feedback y'all have to give. All constructive critique is welcome too! Warmest Mahalo, Jonathon
  11. 4 points
    Hi All, I wrote my first piece for DRONELIFE and had to name UAV Coach as one of the best communities. I'm really enjoying the discussions here and I hope more people catch on. Here are some others I recommend, as well. http://dronelife.com/2017/06/05/a-guide-to-the-top-drone-forums-and-facebook-groups/
  12. 4 points
    Welcome to the Republic of California, where the inmates are running the asylum and they aren't happy unless they're telling everyone else how to live.
  13. 4 points
    Pricing, to a very large extent, will depend on the price of the properties you're shooting. A real estate agent will be a lot more likely to spend marketing money on a multi million dollar estate than a $250 K tract home. If you're just starting out I'd suggest speaking to one or more local agents - preferably agents who specialize in large, high end properties. I find that I get a lot more requests for still images than video because the websites local agents use most, the MLS & realtor.com, do not host video, though that may be different in your area. It's also important for you to understand what advantages aerial photography brings to real estate marketing. Basically there's no reason to do aerials for an unassuming Cape Cod on a a quarter acre lot. I'm attaching conventional and aerial pictures of a nice colonial I shot last fall that, I think, show the advantage of aerial photography. Having said all that I'll tell you that I charge $250 for aerial still photography, $150 if I'm also doing conventional photography as I save travel time.I charge by the day for video work. $400 for a half day, $750 for a full day. Post production is much harder for video, at least for me. I wish I could charge more, but I think I'm pretty close to what the market will bear.
  14. 3 points
    Hi everyone, I've created about 900 tracks of music and sound effects that you can freely use in your videos. It's all original...all my own work. All I ask is to be attributed in the video as described on my homepage: http://soundimage.org/ I'm a big fan of drone videos so it's always a treat for me to hear my music in them. Please feel free to share links if you happen to use some of my tracks...I sincerely hope they are helpful! All the best, Eric
  15. 3 points
    This was posted in here previously, but wanted a dedicated thread I could sticky as I keep coming back here looking for this. http://dronecenter.bard.edu/state-and-local-drone-laws/ If you know of other good collections for local drone laws or ordinances that have been enacted that are NOT in the above link, please add another comment to the thread with as much info as possible.
  16. 3 points
    we build a waterproof drone that takes off and lands in water. the motors are fine to get wet, most ESC's are wrapped in shrink wrap and you can spray any exposed wires o CAP's with different types of chemicals that will make them waterproof. You have to be a little more clever when it comes to the flight controller, Rx, video Tx etc to be able to ventilate the heat and you can't make it a completely watertight compartment because of the barometer. You have to have a way to equalize the air pressure or it won't hold altitude. This is a fun example of waterproofing drones:
  17. 3 points
    Had a nice chat with Mike and Al over at http://uas-fire.com the other week and wanted to share here: Hope it's helpful!
  18. 3 points
    Once again you give us all reasons to hate you. Its not enough that you live in this incredible place but then you rub our faces in it by producing videos that probably make it look better than it is. Wish I was there..
  19. 3 points
    One of our strong clients recently asked us to put together a 1 minute Maui lifestyle video for their upcoming promo. This is what I put together for them, had a great time delving into already-collected footage. Enjoy!
  20. 3 points
    I have a unique position that allows me to use a UAS but my primary responsibilities are more tied to field collection of utility data (primary) and then everything else (any assets the university owns, maintains, or is adjacent to our property). I fly as much as time and weather allow. It is never as much as I would like. On average I log 3-4 hours a month of actual flight time and roughly five times that amount in paperwork associated with the flights, maintenance, planning and record keeping as well as processing the imagery that we collect. Projects vary in size from a week to a couple of years. We mainly fly a pre-construction site set of imagery and then milestone events for utilities as well as a final set once construction is complete. It can be as simple as a few hours to fly a simple project to months covering a capital construction project. Getting a project off the ground always starts in a series of pre-construction meetings with the Systems reps on our side and the general and sub-contractors to lay out the ground work such as requirements on our side (no crew on-site to avoid flying over people/moving vehicles, site security, ect...) and address concerns on their side. You also have to identify your milestone events and determine the scheduling in order to meet your goals. Then it becomes a matter of your basic flight planning and procedures to get each flight off the ground safely and complete the mission or series of mission. Follow that up with processing the data and all the record-keeping that is also required. I don't travel outside my immediate area; I work for a university on the construction side so travel is not an option (and I've done enough earlier in life that I've gotten that out of my system). My job allows me the full run of our system and I have excellent support from my upper level management so I am basically free to set my own priorities and implement the plan as I see fit without too much interference. Sorry for the general answers but its really hard to quantify a generic answer when everything we do is basically unique on a per-project basis.
  21. 3 points
    Cool truck! But I can hear the GPS now -- "recalculating... do a U-turn in 180' turn left on there's no way your going to make it." Nice video.
  22. 3 points
    Would you mind explaining why users here should use your service as opposed to other similar services. Curious how much you pay, how much lead time for services, do you take airspace into consideration , etc?
  23. 3 points
    @JBR LIFE Photography, Aloha! It's probably because after watching your awesome video they asked themselves, "What are we doing? Look how beautiful that is!"
  24. 3 points
    This drone is amazing. Its a small quad with 5" props that has a 6-axis gimbal, can carry a Canon 7D for about 45 minutes. Plus the batteries only take about 10 minutes to charge and cost $10!
  25. 3 points
    That's really tough to say. It really depends on the realtor, the products or services your offering and whether the realtor values marketing at all. I'm amazed at the number of realtors who's idea of marketing is cell phone pictures on Zillow. But then I'm equally amazed at the number of 107 operators who just want to shoot the roof from a drone... I've found that most of the realtors in my area who have the $2M+ listings are older and just believe in working their Rolodex, they aren't willing to pay much above $250 for anything. I'd suggest finding three or four younger, ambitious realtors in your area that are looking for ways to get the bigger listings and show them how you can help them accomplish that. In order to do that you're going to have to do more than aerial, you'll need to be able to shoot the stills, video, color correct and produce media that can provide them with marketing materials that separate them from every idiot on Zillow. I've done a lot of property video's, but keep in mind that I don't rely on this for my income so maybe the thing to do is offer them some incentive, but it's been my experience that most realtors won't appreciate it. They'll just go with the next person to offer an incentive.
  26. 3 points
    Yes, you would need an airspace waiver or authorization for that portion of the flight that extended into class E airspace. In that case, the portion above 700' AGL. The regs reference class E with regard to airports because that is where class E to the surface generally exists. Since generally flight is restricted to 400' AGL, the regs don't mention class E that starts at 700' AGL. But make no mistake it is still class E and permission is required. Although you can fly higher if within 400' of a tall structure, the FAA always defaults to the more restrictive regulation if there is overlap. Very good question!
  27. 3 points
    I'm very happy to announce that with the help of UAV Coach, I was able to pass the Part 107 drone pilot exam with a 90% score. A couple of suggestions: It's hard to guess, but I had never seen about 20-30% of the questions on the exam. It is very important to learn the basis behind the rules and class material and not depend on memorizing the practice test answers. Learn all you can and repeat and repeat everything you learn. I am quite sure I would not have passed it on the first round without taking this course. Thanks to Alan and Mike for always responding in a timely way to a number of questions I had for them. With gratitude. Stan Nickel
  28. 3 points
    Aloha, I wanted to share the most recent property video from a house that I really loved. This piece was shot almost entirely on a P4. Only the zoomed in view shot was calories with a DSLR. Mahalo for viewing!
  29. 3 points
    As long as you are not flying for profit (commercially) and are flying under 336 rules (AMA) you are not required to file a NOTAM. You need to have a COA in order to file to my understanding (which may or may not be correct). I always call the tower to inform them that I am flying 15 minutes prior to takeoff, and while this is not necessary it is in accordance with a deal we struck when I began flying. You might contact the local airport manager and meet with him face to face and see how he wants to handle it. It could be something as simple as a letter of agreement or just a call to the tower (or no contact at all in some cases). At least give him/her the option and you should not have any problems.
  30. 3 points
    How to Price Your Drone Mapping Services might provide some a useful advice.
  31. 3 points
    There are more threads with the topic embedded but this will get you started. ESRI's Drone2Map was based off of the Pix4Dmapper software but they are going native and the next version is supposed to be all their own. simActive's Correlator3D has some unique hardware requirements but it is some slick software if you have a GPU that will run it. The GPU needs to be OpenGL and OpenCL compliant, and not that many high-end GPUs fit that bill.
  32. 3 points
    Here's my most recent effort at producing a property video. I hope you enjoy.
  33. 3 points
    Longer shot of Downtown.
  34. 3 points
    My friend Lauren, who regularly kicks but at Drone360, wrote a great piece about a little-known rule. If you're working on the farm, you want to read this. http://drone360mag.com/rules-regulations/2017/06/part-137-agricultural-aircraft-the-drone-certification-youve-never-heard-of#.WULTFyeruGA.facebook
  35. 3 points
    Proposed Bill This bill aims to allow local jurisdictions such as states, counties, cities, towns the right to control airspace for sUAS purposes. Commercial art 107 and hobbyists will affected. What will this potentially cause? A concentric ring of laws that may contradict each other. Proposes 200 foot standoff from any private property as a minimum federal guideline. This will shut down closed set filming in close areas where you already have to get film permits. It will kill anyone wanting to do real estate shots. It will cause added confusion and extra bureaucracy to already arduous and complex set of rules and standards to operate in. It will make it harder or shops trying to comply while opening further opportunities for those wishing to ignore the rules. How can you have a conflicting guidance? Well you could have a job to fly in an area where you are inside 200 feet of someones property. By this law you would have to climb your aircraft to 200 feet AGL or higher. But it might be in controlled airspace where you have an ATC authorization to a max of 100 feet AGL because that might be the highest level you can fly at due to proximity of an airport. So in effect you cant fly. Local jurisdictions already have a method to regulate drone use. The loophole is the launch and recovery of them. And for certain operations such as closed set filming they can and have already established permits. Extra rules from different departments will further what acceptable and what is not. What really needs to happen, IMO? Congress needs to let the FAA codify model aircraft rules, treat them like ultralite manned aircraft in Part 91 but in the Part 107. This will make on simple set of rules that will not be arbitrary and piece milled sets of rules, guidance and advisories. What can you do? Write your two senators. I would suggest a hard copy as that will make more of an impression if their staff offices are being flooded with thousands of physical envelopes, versus simply just writing e-mails which are easier to ignore. If you stay silent it may happen. BTW, this is by partisan it is being co sponsored by Tom Cotton. Tom Cotton politically is on the far opposite fringe of the right political spectrum to Feinstein being on the far left. So this is not a liberal versus conservative issue.
  36. 3 points
    Calling all of the city halls in my perspective work areas to verify there are no other cities with a drone ordinance so I don't run into another issue. The city of El Segundo, ca gave me some weird answers that didn't make sense. Drove down to their city hall, I ended up in front of the city business guy. He had a lot of questions for me as well. Turns out he regards me as a drone expert (don't know about that) and wants me to come speak in front of their city council meeting so that I can educate the body with insight. My fear is that I'll say something that triggers more regulation on our already overly regulated industry. Fingers crossed!
  37. 3 points
    We flew two missions last year in Coastal Trident, a law enforcement exercise to test port security for homeland defense. The first is a bomb on a boat and our ability to detect and pursue. The second was integrating one of our drones into first responders command and control and detecting nuclear material on a large ship. Both missions were successful.
  38. 3 points
    This can become a hottly debated subject. Initially Airmap was a website where local business owners could pay a fee to restrict airspace around their businesses. Then they partnered with DJI to become part of their implementation of GEO fencing. If a smartphone app can provide better situational awareness for drone operators as long as its accurate that's great. If it becomes a trusted source of information and you pay for that service, that's the operators choice. But if drone manufacturers make this technology mandatory then they become a regulatory agency and they aren't authorized to do that. You are the PIC, you need to take any and all relevant sources of information into account when making your decision to fly. But you probably shouldn't rely solely on a cell phone app.
  39. 3 points
  40. 3 points
    Here is a quick pan I did of Long Beach, CA skyline...
  41. 3 points
    Dear Friends: The proposal by Senator Feinstein is fraught with flaws and vagueness but unfortunately represents issues raised nationwide by many who are not fully informed. .Its not simply California. I wrote the following letter, mailed this weekend to the Senator.
  42. 3 points
    Hey everyone, I just wanted to say that I appreciate all of the feedback. Ultimately, I decided to pass on the job as it was way too difficult to set out a clear plan to my client. Thanks for sharing this. I have looked through this before and there is literally nothing written here about drones. I really wish there was a clear resource put out from New York City about how to fly for commercials, films, and television legally. My first experience using this forum was pretty great. Thanks everyone who took the time to help!
  43. 3 points
    This is kind of a religious debate where everyone gets angry and no one is right. It was never really about the $5 nor about registering your drone. If you were reregistering your drone there would have been a number for every drone, they were registering users. Then they made the database public. It had nothing to do with nor did it make drones safer of protect non user's privacy. This made drone operators who registered their drones second class citizens. Everyone should be for this ruling. You can be for this ruling and still support registration. The FAA cannot unilaterally impose its will on everything that flies. There's a process the FAA MUST go through to create rules. Also keep in mind the FAA does not make laws, only congress can make a law. There are several reasons for this. This is a general statement - Most of the companies and organizations who are against this ruling have been using the regulatory process as a way to gain a competitive or political advantage. The primary reason for the NPRM process is to prevent this sort of thing from happening. The FAA is prohibited from regulating commerce. They can not create rules that are arbitrary, capricious or promulgate any rule without going through the NPRM process. This process provides the public the opportunity to review and have input into the development of the rules that govern them. This prevents large companies from influencing the process in a way that regulates out competition. There are companies out there that don't respect or believe that individuals should be involved in this process. "VP of Policy & Legal Affairs Brendan Schulman said in a statement offered to TechCrunch. “I expect the legal issue that impedes this program will be addressed by cooperative work between the industry and policymakers.”
  44. 3 points
    Drone Deploy is fine if you are not planning on using GCPs and you don't want to mess with learning the software. Basically, they do all the processing for you and a little cleanup of the 3D aspect. The pricing isn't bad as a temporary solution for a full package sans GCPs at around $3000.00 a year. You have a lot more control over your projects with Pix4D both up front in establishing GCPs and checkpoints and in the final product including a lot of additional outputs like contour lines, DSMs, DTMs, point clouds, ect...For this, you do have the additional task of learning how to use the software but you also have the ability to spend a lot of time on the back end cleaning up your project data to make it more attractive. There are a lot of pricing options; we went with a perpetual license for $8700.00 with a ~$900.00 per year maintenance fee. Over a five year lifespan, it was a little more expensive BUT it runs on my workstation under an OpenGL environment without any need to upgrade. You can also look at Correlator3D by Symactive which I had really high hopes for but the hardware requirements and our purchasing bureaucracy dashed those hopes. Over a five year lifespan it is actually cheaper (~&2000.00 cheaper) even taking into account that I had to buy yet another GPU that would run it (FirePro W7100 or W9100) that operates under an OpenCL environment. One drawback is that the available coordinates systems you can choose between to run your projects under is pretty limited but I'm sure you can script that and resolve that issue. Bottom line is Drone Deploy is good for casual use without much accuracy unless you have a lot of extra cash to spend on adding GCPs to each map (we produce at least 200-1500 map sets of various projects through a fiscal year). Otherwise, you need to dole out a little more money up front and learn how to use the software (or hire a photogrammetrist).
  45. 3 points
    Some interesting items from FAA here https://www.faa.gov/news/safety_briefing/2017/media/MayJun2017.pdf
  46. 3 points
    Hey @Up Sonder! Love this question. This is something we grapple with frequently at AeroVista Drone Academy. How does one measure experience for a drone pilot? Especially with varying and complex mission profiles (Construction mapping vs. Thermography, ETC. ) This question is especially pertinent when we train pilots on the Public Safety side, because not only does a pilot have to be experienced, but they have to maintain proficiency! A 500hr pilot who hasn't flown in 6 months has plenty of experience, but over time skills get rusty. This is why the FAA requires 90 day currency for manned pilots to carry passengers, and biannual flight reviews to keep a pilot's certificate active. So here's my opinion, which is entirely based upon my experience instructing drone pilots of all backgrounds from former airline pilots getting into the unmanned world, and those with zero aviation background staring totally green. First, let's define "experienced" What I would consider an "experienced" drone pilot is one that I would trust flying under my authorizations, waivers and insurance without creating significant spikes in my blood pressure. This is someone who's had enough flight hours to see some emergencies, bad weather and complicated airspace. This is someone who's encountered adversity and demonstrated their ability to sort it and keep flying safely. They don't need to be Chuck Yeager, but they need to be independent, confident, and safe. An "experienced" and "flight ready" drone pilot has logged between 100 and 150 total flight hours, with at least 3 hours in the preceding 90 days, and 10 hours "on type" (on the make and model they intend to fly) Why so rigorous? With very few instructional standards, and the constant progression of automation technologies, the role of PIC becomes less and less about physically flying the Aircraft. This is a real double-edged sword for the student drone pilot. Usually, when someone learns a skill, they follow the following progression, which can be described by the following thoughts: Unconscious Incompetence. "PSSSH this is EASY! I'll master this overnight" (Don't know what you don't know) Conscious Incompetence. "Woah, okay. I now know how much I don't know" Conscious Competence. "I can do this, if i focus on it" Unconscious Competence. "I can do this without thinking about it" This progression applies to almost anything. Learning to fly, learning to drive, even learning a musical instrument. The problem is, in order to progress, a learner must first be confronted with the fact that they don't know what they don't know. When I learned to fly an airplane, this became very apparent very fast. The problem with cheaper and more available automation, is it allows new pilots to become somewhat successful (IE, not break anything for a while) before they are confronted by their own lack of proficiency) When I was a kid, radio controlled helicopters had little to no automation. I bought one, thinking it would be easy to fly. It ended up looking like This and I was immediately confronted by just how little I knew. Necessity is the impetus to learning. if you don't feel you NEED to know something, you WON'T learn it. Over time, a pilot builds confidence. If that confidence building in't peppered with minor emergencies and uncomfortable situations. That confidence turns to complacency and in aviation, Complacency Kills. If I where to ask you, "Which group of pilots are most likely to crash" you'd probably say, "Student Pilots, because they have the least experience!" but you'd be wrong. In fact, the AOPA's Nall Report on aviation accidents, lists low time Private Pilots as the most likely to cause accidents. nearly half the accidents reported where caused by Private Pilots. But why does that happen? They have certificates so shouldn't they know more, and therefore be safer than than the students? Here's the problem: They get cocky. Just like the 16-year-old kid with a brand new driver's license, they've been through all the training they've been out on the road and they think they know everything there is to know. Until they get confronted by their lack of proficiency. Or in my case when I was 16, my neighbors mailbox. So What does all this mean for drone pilots? As helpful as automated modes are (secretly, I love flying the DJI birds in P-GPS) they can cause the really insidious problem of brushing a pilot's lack of skill under the rug. Essentially allowing them to build hours, without building experience. This building of hours in turn causes vastly increasing confidence causes pilots to feel comfortable cutting corners, skipping steps, and flying "on the edge" Problem is, all that shiny new obstacle avoidance and automation only works well under perfect conditions. Unfortunately, the real world is filled with bad GPS reception, high winds and dark skies and often times those systems fail. As a result, with no substantive airmanship skills to fall back on, drone pilots crash. with little guidance from the FAA as to how to train pilots beyond 107, it's incumbent on us in the industry to set the expectations and training standards for tomorrow's pilots. While it's obviously not of the same risk profile as a manned aircraft, no serious industrial user can afford to have pilots ditching Phantoms after a magnetometer failure, or having CFIT (Controlled Flight into Terrain) losses on construction sites with tall cranes. It's simply not enough for a pilot to have just flown a certain number of hours. Its paramount that they can demonstrate proficiency and recency along with experience. We as an industry have the opportunity to be the safest sector of aviation. Let's do it!
  47. 3 points
    Great feedback @Up Sonder and @eColumbia99. Wholeheartedly agree that respect is very important in a community forum like this. New designs / forum threads going live in the next 2-3 weeks!
  48. 3 points
    Hey everyone, Here where I work we don't take the drone into too much consideration when it comes the quality of the products that we can provide, granted our sUAS is very high end. We have only been using a fixed wing aircraft made by Trimble that is specifically designed for surveying. We know that the quality of our products depends on how it is processed and gathered. We use survey grade GNSS receivers or conventional total stations to set out GCPS and to observe the more critical areas of a survey when it comes to elevation, especially when it needs to match some existing grade somewhere. The camera onboard is also very high quality, not just a "UHD Camera". We use the Trimble UX5 HP which logs a static GNSS vector as it flies and must be run with a local static base station logging it's own Data. Trimble claims that their processing Software (TBC) paired with this particular drone eliminates the need for GCPs through the use of Post Processed Kinematic methods that they derived. Trimble is well known to the surveying field to be high end surveying equipment and is probably blindly trusted when they make these statements. We, however have found through our own experiments that it is simply not true. I have come across horizontal differences of more than a foot and vertically even more when comparing a processed flight with survey grade GCPs to one without them. This, a survey grade company (Trimble), still doesn't yield the accuracy needed to rely on for any type of design without the use of survey grade GNSS receivers and the knowledge to understand the shortcomings of the photogrammetry performed. This, in my mind does not bode well for new services such as PX4d to be reliable for survey grade data yielded from a point cloud they generate. I agree that they can take a point cloud and make it useful but to rely on it for photogrammetry scares me. We cautiously use TBC and understand that in order for a survey to receive our stamp that it must be controlled well. We not only use our system for Topographic surveys but for Alta surveys as well as supplemental data. Deriving the feature line work and most of the surface (if requested) is done along with our survey technicians. It is clear to me that the data that can be gathered by sUAS can be very accurate if processed correctly, but that it does not eliminate the need for ground work, nor the need for a licensed surveyor to produce and examine the data. I agree with R Martin above that surveying is still a very profitable profession to enter, having just entered it myself as a 24 year old LSIT. The need for surveyors is growing very quickly as well in New Mexico. Someone said above that it would be foolish not to get into the newest technology available as a surveyor and I couldn't agree more. Surveyors for the most part are not young people and do not like to have to learn to work with new technology. That is where we young surveyors can help the previous generation while they help us to understand how to determine a boundary, and how to use all of the equipment they have been accustomed to. The Idea of GNSS was rejected fairly widely and thought of only as a fad, those that believed this were missing out on increasing profitability in a lot of projects. Don't let this technology pass you up as a fad. It is a great tool that we use frequently and it will only continue to grow and improve. Sorry if I seemed to jump around. -Kyle
  49. 3 points
    Hello All, First thing first, my apologize for not responding sooner. I have had my head down working with our engineers on some of your feedback you provide as well as on the product in general. Secondly, will anyone of you be attending Xponential (May 8-11th) this year in Dallas? If so, I will be there and would like to invite any of you to come by and see the current product. We (I will provide the company info in a direct PM if you are interested) are having an invite-only preview of our new mapping product at AUVSI/XPonential. I'd like to show it, and get feedback it from experts like yourselves. I will upload some example images from the software shortly. V/R,
  50. 3 points
    Hi Franklin, thinking about what you've been able to put together so far re: pictures and videos, what do you see your end product looking like? Have you looked at other aerial service companies in the city / state to see what their service packages look like? I'm not talking about price...I'm talking about quality, and what the deliverables are for the client. There are 101 different ways to offer value to a RE broker with aerial photos / videos, just want to get a sense of what you're thinking and where you think you fit into the local market. Do you also plan to get liability insurance? Do you have any background in photography / videography? Will you be doing the post-processing yourself? As you can see, a lot of questions. Pricing a service like this is all about value exchange and striking a balance between 1) what the client is willing to pay and 2) what value/experience/professionalism/end-product you bring to the table.