Land Air Water

Chapter 1: Combining to overcome unique challenges

Land air water

Author: Benjamin Federmann, May 2016

Knowing the volume of material in a gravel quarry can be the difference between profit and loss. For Knobel-Bau GmbH, a company in the aggregates sector that manages gravel quarries, concrete factories and tar mixing plants, this information is critical for business success. That’s why the firm relies on the engineering expertise of IngenieurTeam GEO GmbH (formerly known as Ingenieurteam Trenkle GmbH) in Karlsruhe, Germany, to accurately calculate and model its quarries.

Focusing on surveying engineering technologies, IngenieurTeam GEO was contracted to determine the remaining volume in Knobel-Bau’s quarries. By creating georeferenced orthophotos and digital terrain models using the Aibotix Aibot X6 unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV), the firm was able to present the current situation in detail and provide an effective inventory reduction plan.

“With this detailed historical overview, our customer can coordinate the extraction processes more precisely,” said Martin Schwall, owner and managing director of IngenieurTeam GEO. “This enables the customer to securely plan what to do with the remaining material, based on the most current and accurate information available.” 

Combining to overcome unique challenges

The gravel quarries of Knobel-Bau also include artificial lakes. An expertise of the company, IngenieurTeam GEO uses specially equipped boats for hydrography surveys. What was missing, though, was an aerial view of the entire quarry.

A longtime user of Leica Geosystems levelling and GNSS instruments, IngenieurTeam GEO first became interested in UAV technology when Aibotix became part of the portfolio in 2014. Streamlining surveying components into a fast and efficient process for projects was a key factor in pursuing UAVs for spatial data collection.

“The accuracy of the collected data is important to us, but also the reliability, functionality and quality of all surveying equipment,” said Schwall. “We decided to use the Aibotix Aibot X6 UAV for its trusted reputation in the industry. We then trained one of our employees to become a professional pilot, and we’ve been able to expand our business. Since his training and certification, we not only offer surveying services on land and water but also from the air.”

The aerial survey of the extraction site, including its artificial lakes, and the simultaneous hydrographic survey of the water using the special survey boat posed a specific challenge. Essential to this particular project, both tasks had to be precisely coordinated to provide Kobel-Bau with accurate information.

Explore next chapter: Flying high, measuring low

Story: Land air water
Chapter 1: Combining to overcome unique challenges
Chapter 2: Flying high, measuring low
Chapter 3: A growing potential

Reporter 74 - May 2016

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