RANGE-BASED NETWORK FORMATION TO SUPPORT GEOREFERENCING OF MAPPING SWARM PLATFORMS
Keywords: Geodetic Networks, Point Spatial Distributions, Swarm Mapping, Adjustment
Abstract. Mapping platforms jointly operating in a formation are increasingly used to improve the efficiency of geospatial data acquisition recently. For example, UAS swarm mapping is gaining market share or robot platform are used for indoor mapping. These platforms are typically equipped with imaging and navigation sensors as well as have various communication capabilities. Until now, the platforms are individually navigated and georeferenced. Since the platforms are typically sharing a small area, and thus, they are within their sensing range; for example, they can see and thus track each other in optical or lidar imagery. Furthermore, new communication technologies have started to provide ranging information between communication points. Using the ranges between platforms makes it feasible to create a local geodetic network defined by the platforms. The geometric strength of the network then can be exploited to support platform georeferencing. In this study, the network formation based on ranges is investigated. Initial experiences are reported on the impact of the size of the network, the spatial distribution of the network nodes and the number of available ranges.