Geo Week News

April 18, 2013

GNSS sensor system meets airborne laser scanner in UAV


RIEGL’s VQ-820-GU surveys sea, river and lake beds plus combined land and hydrographic airborne survey

RIEGL Laser Measurement Systems GmbH said Thursday Applanix Corporation’s AP50 GNSS-Inertial sensor system was successfully integrated with its VQ-820-GU topo-bathymetric airborne laser scanner on board the Schiebel Camcopter S-100 unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV).

Horn, Austria-based RIEGL manufactures terrestrial (static), mobile (kinematic), airborne and industrial laser scanning with proprietary software packages for data acquisition and processing for multiple fields of applications.

Its VQ-820-GU is specifically designed to survey sea beds and the grounds of rivers and lakes. It is also well suited for combined land and hydrographic airborne survey.

Applanix is based in Richmond Hill, Ontario, and is a subsidiary of Trimble Company, a $2 billion, Calif.-based leader in mobile mapping and positioning manufacturing, which bought Applanix for nearly $19 million in 2003.

Applanix’ products are used in a variety of applications, including road profiling, GIS data acquisition, aerial surveying and mapping, railroad track maintenance and seafloor mapping.


The Applanix system is a GNSS-Inertial sensor plus inertial measurement unit (IMU) in a compact form factor. It features a high-performance precision GNSS (global navigation satellite system) receiver and the Applanix IN-Fusion GNSS-Inertial integration technology running on a dedicated Inertial Engine (IE) board.

RIEGL said when on board a UAV, the system is capable of penetrating areas that may be too dangerous for piloted aircraft or ground patrols.

“We really appreciate the professional and amicable cooperation with Applanix, which allows us to offer user-friendly and powerful, fully integrated solutions for dynamic data acquisition to the marketplace,” said RIEGL Director of International Sales, Jürgen Nussbaum.

In related news, 22-year-old Applanix will be a Gold sponsor at RIEGL’s international user conference, RIEGL LIDAR 2013, in Vienna, Austria June 25-27.

“Working closely with RIEGL, we continue to add value to our client base worldwide,” said Joe Hutton, director, Airborne Products at Applanix. “As a gold sponsor of RIEGL’s user conference, we’re looking forward to not only interacting with our many partners and customers but also to continue our focus on the future of LIDAR and its many applications.”

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