Geomatics

March 2009 » PROGRESSIVE ENGINEERING TECHNOLOGY
The geomatics field extends broadly beyond traditional surveying to include GIS, laser scanning, GPS, mobile data collection, and geospatial imaging, among other technologies. At the same time, these technologies are merging to allow easier integration into civil engineering workflows. In response to a request from CE News, companies provided the following information about their products. Company web addresses are provided for immediate access to additional information.
CE News Staff

The geomatics field extends broadly beyond traditional surveying to include GIS, laser scanning, GPS, mobile data collection, and geospatial imaging, among other technologies. At the same time, these technologies are merging to allow easier integration into civil engineering workflows. In response to a request from CE News, companies provided the following information about their products. Company web addresses are provided for immediate access to additional information.

Autodesk’s (www.autodesk.com/map3d) AutoCAD Map 3D 2010 uses open-source Feature Data Object technology to provide direct access to the leading data formats used in design and GIS, and enables the use of AutoCAD software tools for maintaining spatial information. According to the company, AutoCAD Map 3D bridges the gap between CAD and GIS, making it possible for engineering and GIS professionals to work with the same data and allowing design processes to integrate geospatial functions in a single environment. Increased survey functionality focuses on asset data collection and mapping, which the company says helps organize, manage, and integrate field-collected data

Bentley Systems, Inc.’s (www.bentley.com) Bentley Map is a fully featured desktop GIS that can be used to map, plan, design, build, and operate infrastructure. Bentley Map enhances underlying MicroStation capabilities to power geospatial data creation, maintenance, and analysis. Bentley Map works with the Bentley Geospatial Server and Bentley’s mobile, web-publishing, and industry applications. Bentley Map includes a full suite of spatial analysis and presentation capabilities. These include tools for creating buffers around objects, performing topology overlays, creating thematic maps, and more. The results of these analytical processes can be plotted, printed, or published to PDF.

Carlson Software (www.carlsonsw.com) offers Grade Supervisor v1.0, designed specifically for site supervisors, inspectors, and grade checkers. Grade Supervisor works either on a GPS pole or in a vehicle. The software provides direct import of DWG files, DXF files, and machine control files. Supervisors can get daily, weekly, or anytime volumes; track real-time cut/fill; plus both collect and stake points. The software supports most GPS/GNSS receivers and is Windows XP/Vista compatible.

ArcGIS users can now create and maintain parcel data directly from within ArcGIS with CEDRA Corporation’s (www.cedra.com) CEDRA-AVparcel. No third-party software is required, and there is no passing of data from various packages in and out of ArcGIS. CEDRA-AVparcel is tailored for tax (cadastral) mapping, parcel maintenance, and general polygon editing applications. Based on a modern COM technology user interface, CEDRA-AVparcel for ArcGIS offers ArcMap users the ability to perform COGO and parcel maintenance applications directly from within ArcMap.

Eagle Point (www.eaglepoint.com) offers SMI Data Collection 2008 for surveying and GIS. Able to run on most devices with Windows Mobile and Windows CE, Eagle Point says that SMI 2008 includes many improvements to the user interface and custom setting capabilities while maintaining the keyboard overlays from previous versions, which makes for a smooth transition. For increased protection from data loss, SMI 2008 uses a maintenance-free database that resists corruption, and users no longer need to search backups to salvage corrupted job files. SMI 2008 allows users to store and view measurements, intermediate calculations, settings, and instrument changes.

ERDAS Inc. (www.erdas.com) released many of its popular recorded webinars on www.erdas.com. Each video includes a presentation, demonstration, and customer interaction with the presenter. The webinars highlight new solutions and enhancements, the interoperability of ERDAS’ offerings with other geospatial products, and customer applications. This includes regularly highlighting the enhancements and upcoming developments to ERDAS IMAGINE and its related products.

ERSI’s (www.ersi.com) ArcGIS Mobile 9.3 is a software platform that gives organizations the ability to deliver GIS capabilities and data to and from the field via ArcGIS Server over wireless networks to a range of mobile devices. The latest release, ArcGIS Mobile 9.3, includes a configurable, out-of-the-box application designed to use on Microsoft Windows Mobile 5.0 and 6.0 Pocket PCs to create and deploy GIS data, maps, tasks, and projects.

Highway Products, Inc. (www.800toobox.com) introduced its latest Surveyor Pickup Pack field equipment organizing system. This marine-grade aluminum unit is specially designed for site surveyors, engineers, and contractors to provide extra storage capacity in truck beds combined with quick accessibility and lockup security. Surveyor Pickup Pack includes a gull wing saddle box, two lockable low-side boxes, and a flat or dome center hatch. When closed, the hatch locks the tailgate, making the bed area secure and weather resistant.

Intergraph (www.intergraph.com) announced new capabilities for Smart Grid operations. Through this new functionality, Intergraph enables utilities not only to view but also to control their entire distribution network from a single interface. Integraph incorporates enhanced integration with supervisory control and data acquisition (SCADA) technology and distribution management systems data from companies such as Siemens Energy, Inc.

Leica Geosystems, Inc.’s (www.leica-geosystems.us) FlexLine series of total stations offers three, pre-configured instruments—TS02, TS06, and TS09. Leica FlexLine TS02 has a single standard keyboard that interfaces seamlessly with industry standard data collectors. For greater flexibility, users can add optional Bluetooth for wireless communications. The Leica FlexLine TS06 base model includes a short-range reflectorless, single alpha numeric keyboard and a dual-function trigger key. The total station’s modular framework lets users add new features and customize the system as needed. Complementing the complete set of software options on the Leica FlexLine TS09 are standard USB ports, dual alpha numeric keyboards, Bluetooth wireless connections, 1-mm accuracy, and short-range reflectorless functionality.

Magellan (www.pro.magellangps.com) introduced MobileMapper 6, a rugged, waterproof, handheld GPS/GIS field data-collection unit that can collect geographic data with 2- to 5- meter accuracy in real-time with SBAS corrections. The MobileMapper 6 is a Windows Mobile 6 open platform and offers full compatibility with popular GIS software. It comes standard with an integrated 2-megapixel camera, a built-in microphone, a touchscreen, and Bluetooth for wireless connectivity.

New View Digital Mapping (www.newviewdigitalmapping.com) developed a software application that it says incorporates accurate digital data from multiple sources to produce precise topographic maps, meshes, 3D solids, hydrological studies, flow arrow maps, and earthwork studies. For a limited time, New View Digital Mapping is offering new clients a high-quality digital topographic map of any property (as large as 5 acres) for $2,000. The company’s engineers will run proprietary analyses on the parcel/project, and within 72 hours produce a topographic map.

Optech Inc. (www.optech.ca) announced direct geo-referencing and improved survey-oriented workflow for its ILRIS-3D scanners. This new control software enables point clouds to be directly geo-referenced from each setup location and provides a fully automated process to find field survey targets. Optech’s ILRIS-3D is a fully portable, laser-based 3D ranging and imaging system for the commercial survey, engineering, mining, and industrial markets. According to the company, this new feature enables geo-referencing, re-section, and back-sight functionality, allowing users to dramatically cut data collection and post-processing times. The ILRIS-3D controller will automatically calculate the geo-referenced positions of all future scans from that location.

RapidEye (www.rapideye.de), which owns and operates its own satellite constellation, announced that its system has successfully completed all post-launch testing and calibration activities and is now ready to take on commercial operations. The satellite constellation was successfully launched in August 2008. Since that time, RapidEye’s prime contractor, MacDonald, Dettwiler and Associates Ltd., has been conducting the commissioning period on both the space and ground segment in which system performance and product quality were measured, analyzed, and verified. An e-commerce platform is also under construction that will be available from RapidEye’s website. This self-service shop will allow customers to search for, purchase, and immediately download RapidEye Standard Image Products with no minimum order size.

Riegl USA’s (www.reiglusa.com) VQ-480 is part of its V-Line, which provides high-speed non-contact data acquisition using a narrow infrared laser beam and a fast line scanning mechanism. The high-accuracy laser range is based on Riegl’s echo digitization and online waveform analysis. According to the company, users can have both great data and efficient scan rates. Riegl’s full waveform occurs in real time and allows the user to acquire data in much deeper detail than previously possible. The scanner is designed for easy mounting in any orientation, even under limited space conditions on helicopters or UAVs. The scanner needs only one power supply and provides line scan data via the integrated LAN-TCP/IP interface.

Terrago Technologies (www.terragotech.com) says its TerraGo Mobile is the first geospatial mobile application designed for non-GIS experts. Field personnel need only know how to use the Windows interface and open a PDF to be productive. According to the company, virtually any map or image that has been transformed into an intelligent, interactive, geo-enabled PDF (GeoPDF) can be accessed by the TerraGo Mobile application. Field personnel can then geographically locate and attach photos, videos, audio, and comments. In addition, forms can be attached to the file and analyzed for completion while out in the field. Information can then be shared via e-mail, infrared, or Bluetooth with peers in the field or with GIS departments. TerraGo Mobile works on any mobile device that has Windows Mobile 5 or 6 operating system.

Topcon Positioning Systems (www.topcompositioning.com) introduced the GMS-2 Pro, a handheld GIS mapping solution with integrated auto-focus digital camera and laser distance meter. The GMS-2 Pro offers an integrated laser distance meter that can be used in conjunction with the internal compass for offset measurements. The internal camera can also be used as a barcode reader. According to the company, the combination of distance measurement and image capture technology eliminates manual measurements and the use of extra field equipment and configuration. The GMS-2 Pro also has a BR-1 Coast Guard beacon receiver, using a land-based signal, available for sub-meter real-time differential correction for data collection and navigation.

Trimble Navigation Limited (www.trimble.com) introduced Trimble Access software, a new field and office solution for surveyors that the company says expedites data collection, processing, analysis, and project information delivery through improved workflows, collaboration, and control, which is enabled by constant wireless connectivity between the project team members. The four components of the Trimble Access solution include Trimble Access services, base software for typical survey applications, specialized application modules, and the Trimble Connected Community. Trimble’s AccessSync capability automatically and transparently synchronizes field and office files without delaying or disrupting standard computing processes. This capability is integrated into the complete workflow and reduces manual e-mail setup, slow uploads to FTP sites, and error-prone dictation over the phone.

VUEWorks (www.vueworks.com) is a web-enabled, GIS-integrated work order and asset management solution. Using a web browser, local governments and utilities can share GIS information within the organization and in the field, receive citizen service calls, initiate work order requests, and manage labor costs/inventory. VUEWorks also tracks asset condition, failure/consequence risk, and expenditure history for water, sewer, other utilities, and assists with government regulation compliance, including GASB 34 and sewer system management plans.


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