10 Things You Must Know When Buying Aerial Photography & Photogrammetric Mapping

10 Things You Must Know When Buying Aerial Photography & Photogrammetric Mapping
June 30, 2008 Mike Tully

Considering these ten points can save your organization thousands:

10. Desired Use Of Maps
What is your purpose for this mapping? Typical applications include: design grade maps to calculate cuts and fills, topographical maps submitted for plat, and imagery to display.

9. What Are Your Future Plans?
Is there a possibility of future mapping of sites adjacent to the current project? Knowing potential needs allow you and your provider to advance plan photographic coverage – saving you money in the future.

8. Proximity To Military, Major Airports, Or Secure Sites
Is there a Military facility, major airport, or secure site (i.e. nuclear power) in or near your project area? This can dramatically affect flight schedules and whether special permissions may be required to complete the project.

7. Time Of Year For Acquisition
The time of year acquisition takes place will determine the crop or vegetation coverage on the ground. Will it be more important to see the ground or have qualitative information about vegetation?

6. Total Area Of Coverage
What is the estimated area (acres or square miles)? If unsure, indicate what roads, highways, rivers, or other boundaries that exist so area can be computed.

5. Scope Of Services Required
Do you need planimetric or topographic mapping? What features should the mapping include (i.e. mapping waterlines you would need fire hydrants, water valves, etc.). In addition, should digital ortho images be included?

4. Accuracy Of Mapping
Are you happy with a usable map of reasonable accuracy or do you need a very precise one with specific accuracy? Based on this information, your Photogrammetrist can determine what positional accuracies are needed (i.e. 1″=100′ 2′ CI, 1″=50′ 1′ CI). Any accuracy is possible, but as it increases so does cost.

3. Ground Control & Data Responsibilities
Are you responsible for ground control or is your vendor? In addition, what horizontal and vertical datum is required for project completion and who will provide it (you, the provider performing project, or other subcontractors)?

2. Who Are You Working With?
Protect yourself from amateurs. Be certain you and the vendor fully understand the terminology used. Moreover, ask your provider to demonstrate their experience delivering similar services. Do they have the professional licensures and expertise to complete your project?

1. What Does The Proposal Include?
Ask for a written proposal fully explaining the scope of services and the associated cost. The proposal should also include terms, products/services expected, schedule of delivery, and any special requests.

Have Questions? Lean On Over 40 Years Of Expertise
The quality of your aerial photography can make or break your project. With over 40 years of experience, Aerial Services’ expert flight crews, imagery specialists, and aerial camera systems are ready to surpass your expectations. With an Iowa headquarters servicing any U.S. location and fueling their Midwestern work ethic, your project is completed with care at an affordable price. Plus, they are always there to help you, no matter if you have a current project or are just interested in learning more. Contact them today to find out more about
geospatial solutions that can help you.