The International Archives of the Photogrammetry, Remote Sensing and Spatial Information Sciences
Publications Copernicus
Articles | Volume XXXVIII-1/C22
06 Sep 2012
 | 06 Sep 2012


E. Gülch

Keywords: UAVs, Photogrammetry, Image Quality, Aerial Triangulation, DEM/DTM, Orthoimage

Abstract. Several flights have been undertaken with PAMS (Photogrammetric Aerial Mapping System) by Germatics, Germany, which is briefly introduced. This system is based on the SmartPlane fixed-wing UAV and a CANON IXUS camera system. The plane is equipped with GPS and has an infrared sensor system to estimate attitude values. A software has been developed to link the PAMS output to a standard photogrammetric processing chain built on Trimble INPHO. The linking of the image files and image IDs and the handling of different cases with partly corrupted output have to be solved to generate an INPHO project file. Based on this project file the software packages MATCH-AT, MATCH-T DSM, OrthoMaster and OrthoVista for digital aerial triangulation, DTM/DSM generation and finally digital orthomosaik generation are applied.
The focus has been on investigations on how to adapt the "usual" parameters for the digital aerial triangulation and other software to the UAV flight conditions, which are showing high overlaps, large kappa angles and a certain image blur in case of turbulences. It was found, that the selected parameter setup shows a quite stable behaviour and can be applied to other flights. Investigations have been performed to improve the image quality estimates by the PAMS software and extend it to whole images. This gives the user a reliable basis when deciding on rejecting images with low quality for the follow-up process. Flights over the same area at different times have been compared to each other. The major objective was first to see, on how far differences occur relative to each other, without having access to ground control data, which would have a potential for applications with low requirements on the absolute accuracy. In a second stage the results are compared to GPS measurements on the ground.
The results show, that there are influences of weather and illumination visible. The "unusual" flight pattern, which shows big time differences for neighbouring strips has an influence on the AT and DTM/DSM generation. The results obtained so far do indicate problems in the stability of the camera calibration and a need for some GCPs. It is clearly recommended to use at least a moderate number of GCPs for all projects, independent on the application, as the GPS data of the sensor does not proof to be sufficient.