Notifications
Clear all

Workflow using RTK Drone

10 Posts
6 Users
3 Likes
916 Views
Mike Lacey
(@mike-lacey)
Posts: 106
Member Member
Topic starter
 

We just acquired a DJI Phantom 4 RTK drone, and I’m in the process of figuring what the best workflow for us will be. We have been using the DJI Phantom 4 Pro for the past four years and do our own photo processing in house using Agisoft Metashape software. We are located in a rural area, so I estimate that about 20% of our flights will not have cell service. Our main use will be for as-builts of commercial property with limited topography on hard surfaces and drainage ponds, and location of improvements and roads on large surveys.

For those using RTK drones, what is your workflow for processing PPK, from downloading the GPS files from the drone, processing it with your base station, and updating the revised metadata for the photos into the photo processing software? What software are you using?

 
Posted : March 25, 2022 4:47 am
VA LS 2867
(@va-ls-2867)
Posts: 482
Member Member
 

We have a GPS receiver to act as a base station that came with the phantom from our service provider for the extremely rare instance we do not have VRS coverage.  If you don't have anything else available, there is still standard GCP based flights.

 
Posted : March 25, 2022 5:05 am
leegreen
(@leegreen)
Posts: 2144
Topcon/Microstation/3DMC Specialists Member
 

That's a pretty tall order. Wish someone would have written this manual 3 or 4 years ago when I purchased my P4RTK. There are files and formats you will need to become familiar with and convert to RINEX, Mark position files, etc.

What are you going to use for a base to collect static data? Do you already have and use Static Post-Processing software?

I use Topcon Magnet Tools for PPK Processing and third-party party app to update the image coordinates. I suggest using survey-grade post-processing software if you can, this is much better than open-source apps.

There are commercial apps that use RTK-POST open source post-processing such as KUA PPK Processing and RedToolbox.

This post was modified 8 months ago 3 times by leegreen
 
Posted : March 25, 2022 5:11 am

Get the 2023 SurveyorConnect Wall Calendar

Mike Lacey
(@mike-lacey)
Posts: 106
Member Member
Topic starter
 

@leegreen Yes I agree it's a pretty tall order. Getting familiar with the files and formats is no issue, I've been working with GNSS equipment since the early 90's and processing drone photographs for the past four years using ground control points. Never had the opportunity to work with an RTK drone, and nervous about relying on RTK in areas with poor cell coverage. 

My concern mainly was downloading the rinex files from the drone, processing it with our base station, and updating the metadata in the photos for processing in Agisoft.

I looked at the Redtoolbox software, and that seems like it will do everything I would want it to do at a very reasonable cost. 

I really appreciate the your information, it should set me in the right direction.

 

Thanks,

 

 
Posted : March 25, 2022 8:42 am
Mike Lacey
(@mike-lacey)
Posts: 106
Member Member
Topic starter
 

@va-ls-2867 We've been using ground control points for our projects, and I would like to try using fewer points with the RTK drone. I think using the software Lee recommended will give us a simple eficient way of doing it.

 

Thanks,

 
Posted : March 25, 2022 8:47 am
antcrook
(@antcrook)
Posts: 239
Member Member
 

I use a program called toposetter p4rtk. 

 
Posted : March 25, 2022 11:52 am

Get the 2023 SurveyorConnect Wall Calendar

Mike Lacey
(@mike-lacey)
Posts: 106
Member Member
Topic starter
 

@antcrook That software also looks nice. Thanks

 
Posted : March 25, 2022 12:38 pm
Eddie Brisendine
(@eddie-brisendine)
Posts: 9
Member Member
 

We just began using Carlson Photo Capture and Point Cloud. Not using RTK though, just GCPs. 

Amazing results so far on the two sites we've flown. While out there, we ran a couple of random cross sections with the TS for checks.

 
Posted : March 25, 2022 3:03 pm
VA LS 2867
(@va-ls-2867)
Posts: 482
Member Member
 

@eddie-brisendine The results are far superior with an RTK drone. Less GCP's are needed.  We use one per flight and have a couple check points to have backup.

 
Posted : March 28, 2022 5:31 am

Get the 2023 SurveyorConnect Wall Calendar

johnhls
(@johnhls)
Posts: 41
Member Member
 

Are you able to use RTN setup/sim card route with RTK drone instead of their base unit? Specifically, the P4RTK by itself with access to our Smartnet RTN seat?

John

 
Posted : September 12, 2022 6:59 am