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McIntosh Perry

McIntosh Perry soars with forward thinking

…the test proved the eBee drone was suitable for pre-engineering design and is well above the requirements for draft plans of subdivision.

McIntosh Perry is gaining recognition for taking surveying to greater heights.

The multi-disciplinary full service engineering and consulting firm recently conducted a drone test for capturing low-altitude aerial photography to create a terrain model.

The test proved that a model created from data acquired by the drone can successfully compete in accuracy with a conventional ground topographical survey completed using GPS receivers.

In May, McIntosh Perry collaborated with UKKO Canada to conduct a test of an eBee RTK flying wing drone to compare the results of an aerial survey with a more conventional RTK GPS topographic survey completed in 2014. The un-manned aircraft weighs only 850 grams, and carries an on-board 18 megapixel camera. Flying at altitudes of less than 120 metres, it is controlled by software that allows the operator to use a laptop in the field to prepare the flight plan, monitor the aircraft’s exact position at all times, and control the unit in air.

In a case study written this summer, Brian Kerr, Senior Project Manager with McIntosh Perry Surveying Inc., and Jean-Francois Dionne from UKKO Canada, say the test proved the eBee drone was suitable for pre-engineering design and is well above the requirements for draft plans of subdivision.

Even more interesting is the consideration of time and data collection. The study says the time required to do these surveys is substantially reduced when using a drone. Whereas the ground survey requires four days of field time, the aerial survey required only one hour – and that’s including set up and teardown.

Another benefit is the amount of data acquired. The ground survey acquired 1,800 data points, selectively chosen by the trained eye of the field personnel. By comparison, the aerial survey acquired more than 31 million data points at a density of 115 points per cubic metre.

Kerr writes that using the aerial technology also allows staff to have the property, in virtual form, right in their office. Being able to return to it, measure it, visualize it and design within it, without ever leaving their office chairs provides an immense benefit towards streamlining the process, saving time and money.

The case study notes that the reality of having that information readily available means the way surveying is done today in the field and processing done in the office, will ultimately shift to data acquisition being done in the field and surveying completed in the office.

To read the case study, please click here. To find out more about surveying at McIntosh Perry, please click here.