Q. How accurate is your data?
A. We produce the most accurate landscape models possible using current technology. We can produce models at up-to sub-cm resolution and sub-5cm precision. We collect GPS points using a Trimble R10 RTK GPS, the most accurate portable GPS tool in the world, and collect images with a UAV-mounted 20MP camera with mechanical shutter and 25mm sensor.
Q. What formats are your GIS deliverables?
A. We provide orthomosaics, Digital Elevation Models (DEM) and Digital Surface Models (DSM) in .TIF or .KMZ format. High density point clouds can be produced in .LAS or .XYZ.
Q. What formats are your communications deliverables?
A. We provide photos in .RAW or edited .TIF, and videos in .MOV format. Our 3D models are typically delivered as web-based Sketchfab models in .OBJ or in a custom software package when delivered as an interactive virtual world. We can deliver 3D assets in a range of formats upon request including 3D PDF, .OBJ, .FBX, .3DS, .COLLADA, .PLY, .DXF, .KMZ and .U3D.
Q. what are the rules for using drones?
A. The drone industry is only just starting out and the regulations concerning drone use are constantly changing. For now, commercial drone operators must have a Special Flight Operations Certificate (SFOC) with Transport Canada. We hold a Standing SFOC for all eligible UAV airspace classes and are fully insured, allowing us to fly on-demand anywhere in Western Canada (BC, AB, SK, MB, NT, NWT, YT). Each aerial operation requires site-specific planning and may be constrained by, for example, proximity to airports and weather.
Q. How much does it cost?
A. Each project is different and we are happy to provide a quote for free. UAV-based data are a fraction of the cost of helicopter or airplane-based data and are more accurate. Here are some general guidelines to help estimate the cost of our services:
- Discounts are available for not-for-profit groups
- Subscription plans receive volume discounts
- Higher accuracy and higher precision maps and models are more expensive because it takes longer to collect and process the data. Our standard resolution and precision is roughly 2cm and 5-10cm, respectively.
- Costs are highly dependent on the amount of field time required. Big sites with poor accessibility are more expensive than small sites with easy access.
- Considerable discounts are available for recurring projects. If we are flying a site multiple times (over months or years) we can install permanent or semi-permanent ground control points and cut the cost of subsequent flights by roughly half.
- Adding videography and/or photography to a project is the most cost efficient as we are already in the field. Providing communications support is important to us so videography and photography rates are discounted with data services and relative to the amount of content requested. Discounted rates range from $100-$750 per site.
- Costs for creating customized web-based 3D content from existing survey data costs on the order of hundreds of dollars, customized interactive 3D worlds requires unique software build-outs and costs on the order of thousands of dollars.