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Inertial instrument system for aerial surveying

Open-File Report 85-184

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Abstract

An inertial guidance system for aerial surveying has been developed under contract to the U.S. Geological Survey. This prototype system, known as the aerial profiling of terrain (APT) system, is designed to determine continuously the positions of points along an aircraft flight path, or the underlying terrain profile, to an accuracy of + or - 0.5 ft (15 cm) vertically and + or - 2 ft (61 cm) horizontally. The system 's objective thus is to accomplish, from a fixed-wing aircraft, what would traditionally be accomplished from ground-based topographic surveys combined with aerial photography and photogrammetry. The two-part strategy for measuring the terrain profile entails: (1) use of an inertial navigator for continuous determination of the three-coordinate position of the aircraft, and (2) use of an eye-safe pulsed laser profiler for continuous measurement of the vertical distance from aircraft to land surface, so that the desired terrain profile can then be directly computed. The APT system, installed in a DeHavilland Twin Otter aircraft, is typically flown at a speed of 115 mph (105 knots) at an altitude of 2,000 ft (610 m) above the terrain. Performance-evaluation flights have shown that the vertical and horizontal accuracy specifications are met. (USGS)

Additional Publication Details

Publication type:
Report
Publication Subtype:
USGS Numbered Series
Title:
Inertial instrument system for aerial surveying
Series title:
Open-File Report
Series number:
85-184
Edition:
-
Year Published:
1985
Language:
ENGLISH
Publisher:
U.S. Geological Survey,
Description:
xii, 208 p. :ill. (some col.), maps ;28 cm.