Virtual Surveyor drone surveying software aids earthworks monitoring at construction sites
Information from Virtual Surveyor
Virtual Surveyor has introduced new functionality in Version 7.3 of its drone surveying software to create a workflow for monitoring earthworks progress at construction sites. The workflow enables construction managers to calculate cut-and-fill changes over time for comparison with the earthworks design plan.
The software bridges the gap between unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) photogrammetric processing applications and engineering design packages. In the monitoring workflow, the construction manager can convert 2D CAD files of the earthworks design into a 3D surface, or TIN, and can compare it to the drone imagery which is also converted to surfaces.
Before the comparison is made, users can select and delete items such as bulldozers and equipment piles which can skew volumetric calculations from the drone-derived surface model. The calculated volume difference is represented as a 3D cut-and-fill map. The Spot Heights feature determines precise terrain elevation values, relative to the design. Smaller areas from the cut-and-fill map can also be extracted to perform a detailed analysis.
Virtual Surveyor offers a variety of reporting options for showing the calculation results as colourised cut-and-fill topographic maps with overlaid Spot Heights. These progress maps can be created as often as new drone imagery is captured. The software also enables the construction manager to output 2D design plans as 3D models for use as inputs into machine control systems on the Earth-moving equipment.