THE SALSA PROJECT – HIGH-END AERIAL 3D CAMERA
Keywords: UAV, Scanning System, Digital Terrain Modelling, Modular Payload Concept, Photogrammetric Camera, MACS TumbleCam, Oblique Camera, 3D-Model
Abstract. The ATISS measurement drone, developed at the University of Applied Sciences Wildau, is an electrical powered motor glider with a maximum take-off weight of 25 kg including a payload capacity of 10 kg. Two 2.5 kW engines enable ultra short take-off procedures and the motor glider design results in a 1 h endurance. The concept of ATISS is based on the idea to strictly separate between aircraft and payload functions, which makes ATISS a very flexible research platform for miscellaneous payloads. ATISS is equipped with an autopilot for autonomous flight patterns but under permanent pilot control from the ground. On the basis of ATISS the project SALSA was undertaken. The aim was to integrate a system for digital terrain modelling. Instead of a laser scanner a new design concept was chosen based on two synchronized high resolution digital cameras, one in a fixed nadir orientation and the other in a oblique orientation. Thus from every object on the ground images from different view angles are taken. This new measurement camera system MACS-TumbleCam was developed at the German Aerospace Center DLR Berlin-Adlershof especially for the ATISS payload concept. Special advantage in comparison to laser scanning is the fact, that instead of a cloud of points a surface including texture is generated and a high-end inertial orientation system can be omitted. The first test flights show a ground resolution of 2 cm and height resolution of 3 cm, which underline the extraordinary capabilities of ATISS and the MACS measurement camera system.