Talking About Drones Further: How to Become a Drone Surveyor

Man outdoors with remote control flying a drone in the mountains

As technology progresses, more and more advanced and interesting devices are being introduced in the market. Surely, you can’t think of not having the most updated version of your favorite gadget. From laptops to cameras, people just can’t get enough of these devices, especially now that drones are in the picture.

Unmanned aerial vehicles or UAVs, generally known as drones, have been initially used for military missions. Drones are very helpful as these have been flown to carry out missions that are too dangerous for humans. Moreover, the applications have been stretched out to commercial, civil, agricultural, leisure, and other uses. If you notice a small, helicopter-like device roaming around your area with a camera attached to it, you bet it’s a drone.

Understanding Drones Further: The Use for Civil Applications

Woman playing with drone

Drones are being used for commercial and military applications whereas, in civil applications, these are essentially used in surveying such as land surveying. These are being used to define locations, the distances, and angles in the middle of them. Moreover, these determinants are used to institute location maps. Surveying has been an essential component in the advancement of the environment, while full planning and construction in most forms have need of this.

Early surveying used a rope to institute borders. This was practiced in ancient Egypt. While in medieval Europe, old and young men would gather and walk the areas surrounding the village, inaugurating the memory of the borders. It is in the 21st century that unmanned aerial vehicles expertise has become one of the necessities in image dispensation together with the photogrammetry, a research field that is the study of measurement through photographs. It is used in photographic control survey in which reference points are formed perceptibly from the air letting the photos to be orthorectified.

Surveying and mapping societies have seen the use and opportunity of drones in identifying the problems and possible solutions in their industry. Drones have been assessed to be of great help in the following applications:

  • Gathering accurate surveying data with less time required
  • Providing real-time data
  • Survey challenging locations, reducing or totally removing the requirement for humans to go to dangerous areas
  • Information is obtained for various mapping uses
  • Volumetric calculations, in which it’s useful in industries like civil construction, earthwork plans, and mining and quarries
  • Laser Imaging, Detection And Ranging or Light Detection And Ranging (LIDAR) Mapping
  • Cadastral Surveying wherein land surveyors identify the borders of a property on the ground. The surveyor places marks on the corners of the new borderline and rechecks the other properties by previous surveys;
  • Automated mapping provides better digital representations without any disruptions and destructions in the subjects.

Becoming a Drone Surveyor: Things That You Need to Know

aerial view of home village in thailand use for land development and property real estate business

Related Topic: What is Drone Photography

If you want to know how to become a drone surveyor, you must understand that it’s not an easy responsibility. But if you’re really persistent on the field, there’s no doubt that you’ll become an effective one.

Through the years, surveying ideologies have changed and kept on evolving with the new knowledge sprouting and inventions of equipment for more accurate and easy data gathering. Surveyors must know that aside from the studies of math and sciences, they must be equipped with the know-how about the laws dealing with surveys, construction, contracts, and all others alike.

Since drones are becoming an in-demand thing in the industry of surveying and mapping, and even in the construction for site inspections, it is still not an instant entry for those who know how to use and fly drones.

A drone surveyor is a person with the educational credentials and technical expertise to conduct the following:

  • Collect and interpret land and other geographic correlated data.
  • To prepare, form and manage the land, any constructions, and the sea.
  • To define, measure and characterize land, three-dimensional objects, references, and trajectories.
  • To conduct a study into the aerial practices and to develop them.

Understanding Drone Surveying Further: Rules to Be Observed

White drone quad copter with 4K digital camera flying.

Related Topic: What Drones Are Capable of: How Fast a Drone Can Fly?

The flyers or the pilots of the drone must be aware of the regulations of the Civil Aviation Authority (CAA). The surveyor’s plan needs to be followed in flying the drone and getting the image. Drones for surveying entail legal permission and licensing. There are three levels of credentials that are acknowledged by the authorities:

  1. Survey assistants are known as chainmen who help the surveyors in searching for old references, placing target reflectors, and mark points.
  2. Survey technicians usually have no certification, but qualifications are available. They operate the instruments, do surveys and calculations, and draft plans.
  3. Licensed surveyors have a degree or hold a higher credential. They acquired a degree in surveying, undergone and passed examinations for the certifying authority.

Requirements on licensing vary depending on the location and qualifications depend on your expertise. After the examination has been verified and passed, one is required to go through an on-the-job exercise before they can finally receive a license to practice his degree in surveying.

If you are really good with maps and technology, land surveyor fits you. This includes gauging and gathering data on land areas. Key functions include:

  • Construction
  • Geographical info system
  • Cartography
  • Offshore engineering

Drone copter with digital camera, river with fog on background. Modern technology, UAV conceptTo assure a license in surveying, here are the basic steps to follow and think about:

  • Finish your education. You must have a four-year baccalaureate degree in Land Surveying or related studies
  • Pass an exam under your legislation.
  • Undergo an on-the-job training and build your portfolio and have at least four years of experience.
  • Under the rules of your area again, there are several examinations you have to pass before you can be verified and acquire your licensure.

There are various opportunities in different industries once you have practiced your surveying degree:

  • Agriculture
  • Civil Construction
  • Mining
  • Environmental Educations
  • Land Development

There are establishments that offer courses for those who want to be surveyors. They provide theoretical and practical activities concerning the wide range of surveying, from preparation to processing the statistics that you have gathered. For the practical aspect, of course, there is the use or practice of handling and flying the drones. They also have different specializations depending on the industry or specification of career you wished to enter.

After learning about the aviation, remote piloting, and visual line of sight, you are ready to do aerial surveying. This one is for those who intend to enter industries like mining and quarries, civil construction, and barrier projects. There are technologies offered that will allow you to capture images, use software, and construct the data, resulting in better representation and reporting.

It would take you some time to become a real land surveyor that can legally certify plans and reports. But you have to keep in mind that everything relates to legalization and safety procedures of your area. Undergoing training is worth the wait for the license and salary you may get in the industry you are to enter.

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