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Advanced photogrammetry products explained
Advanced photogrammetry products explained

Learn how to take your drone mapping data to the next level!

Cezary Woźniak avatar
Written by Cezary Woźniak
Updated over a week ago

So you probably know about standard photogrammetry outputs. The orthomosaic, point cloud, 3D textured mesh and DSM.

Nowadays photogrammetry software does a decent job with all of those, but let’s take it to the next level!

Usually our clients are not able to properly work with a dense point cloud or even display it, due to the lack of specialised software or PC’s with advanced memory, CPU or graphic cards.

At Inflights, among other things, we specialize in processing drone mapping data. Our experienced processing team has the necessary tools to post-process any drone mapping data into easy to use data for the end client.

First and foremost our drone mapping data is accurate thanks to GCPs, RTK/PPK image geotags and multiple checks in multiple softwares. We even have developed our own datachecker. Over the years we have seen a lot of drone mapping data that was incorrectly georeferenced. Without this there is no point in post-processing any drone mapping data further!

Let’s explain some of the advanced outputs here:

CAD Linework (Planimetrics)

This product includes extraction of all planimetric features that are visible from drone images. Our team will mark features like: edge of asphalt, edge of concrete, building outlines, utilities, tree driplines and more. This simplifies the information-rich drone mapping outputs into drawings that engineers are used to. The output files are in DWG/DXF format that work flawlessly with CAD software like Civil3D, AutoCAD, Microstation and more.

This is a standard deliverable in our Terrain - Photogrammetry & CAD product.

Learn more here:

CAD layout template

(Note that the example is blurred for confidentiality purposes)

Oftentimes our clients request a printable layout to show our work on paper. Our specialists created an easy to read CAD template that allows you to save the CAD linework in PDF format or to print it.

This layout is available as an add-on to our standard Terrain - Photogrammetry & CAD product in DWG/DXF format.

TIN Surface (clean topo surface)

The TIN (Triangulated Irregular Network) is a vector-based representation of a clean terrain surface. This means that a drone mapping surface is cleaned and simplified to a CAD friendly format. Our workflow produces a light weight and survey-grade representation of the ground, that excludes vegetation, buildings and other man-made or temporary objects.

This is a standard deliverable in our Terrain - Photogrammetry & CAD product. The TIN surface is included in the DWG/DXF file as well as in a separate LandXML file ready for import to most professional 3rd party engineering programs.

Learn more here:

DTM (Digital Terrain Model)

This is a 2.5D raster file that is created from TIN surface. Our clients mainly use it to visualize terrain topography and to calculate water flow. These files are available as an add-on to our Terrain - Photogrammetry & CAD product in TIFF format.


Those are 3D lines at a specified interval that represent the terrain topography in our Terrain - Photogrammetry & CAD product.

Long ago we noticed that contour lines from uncleaned photogrammetry outputs are not accurate because they model the vegetation of a terrain. This is not acceptable to our clients. This is why we developed an in-house workflow to deliver the most accurate contours from our professionally made DTM or TIN surface.

This is a standard deliverable in our Terrain - Photogrammetry & CAD product in DWG/DXF format.

Learn more here:

CAD model of a building/roof

Simplifying the point cloud to a CAD model is a great way to optimize solar panel placement and accurately calculate shading. It can also be used to detect any water drainage issues.

Our clients prefer working with a CAD model of a building/roof rather than working with a dense point cloud.

This is a standard deliverable in our Terrain - Photogrammetry & CAD product in DWG/DXF format. Or any .3D output you require for your software (.obj/.dae)

Learn more here:

Collision point cloud (Power Line mapping)

This product is aimed at power line companies. Vegetation growing too close to the power lines creates many issues. Branches touching power lines can cause electric sparks and wildfires in the dry season. Trees falling on the power lines during storms will cause power outages.

Our team developed a way to detect these clearance issues and present them in a form of colored point cloud and georeferenced 2D map in CAD. After months of testing we also perfected the flight plans to make your life, as a pilot, easier.

We deliver a vegetation encroachment report in PDF, a collision point cloud, a collision point cloud flythrough and a georeferenced 2D map.

These files are our standard deliverables for Power Line mapping jobs.

Learn more here:

Thermal Infrared inspections

Thermal images alone are not enough for most clients that own solar panels. We will stitch these images together, overlay them with As-Built plans, and point out any anomaly, whether this is on cell, panel or string level.

A detailed report in PDF pointing out all the anomalies will help you identify and address any possible issue with your solar panels.

Earthwork volume calculations

Many times we have seen that other people do it wrong. Usually the base surface is not in the correct place or the terrain above the surface is not cleaned - this makes the calculations not accurate. Our team is equipped with specialised 3rd party software designed for this purpose. We can help you do it right!

We provide accurate volume calculation reports in an easy to read PDF/XLS format.

Other outputs that we improved:

  • Orthomosaic - our orthomosaics are clearer and have more detail than standard orthomosaics from photogrammetry processing softwares. They are also compressed in such a way that they work much faster in CAD software.

  • Orthoprojections - our facade ortomosaics are in the maximum resolution, we ensure that they maintain the correct scale in a CAD friendly format.

  • 3D Textured Mesh - our workflow produces superior mesh and texture quality compared to Pix4D or Agisoft meshes.

Tested and easy flight plans

To make your life easier, we prepared flight plans for every scenario, because our output data is only as good as the input data.

Online data visualization (webviewer)

Sometimes the clients don’t have the necessary software to open point clouds and meshes. This is why we introduced a webviewer integrated into our Inflights platform.

Most commonly file formats

We can provide drone mapping data in a large variety of file formats. Need a specific file format? Contact us!

Let’s work together. You fly, we process the data so you can deliver a better product to your customers and spend more time on sales.

Kind regards,

Inflights Team

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