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Special Supplement to <strong>GEOmedia</strong> Journal Issue n° 3-<strong>2016</strong><br />

<strong>INTERGEO</strong><br />

www.intergeo.de<br />


OF URBAN<br />


22<br />


TO THE ZEB<br />



36<br />

SMART<br />

CITY<br />

NEWS<br />



16<br />

28<br />












AREAS: THE<br />






32<br />

Special Supplement to <strong>GEOmedia</strong> Journal Issue n°3-<strong>2016</strong> 15

<strong>INTERGEO</strong><br />


by Luigi Colombo and Barbara Marana<br />

The paper deals some experimental<br />

benchmarks regarding urban environment<br />

modelling. The employed techniques,<br />

which automatically collected point clouds<br />

and created the DSM, are terrestrial laser<br />

scanning, with a direct GNSSRTK<br />

geo-referencing, and UAS imagery.<br />

Fig. 3 - A perspective view of S. Pellegrino Terme inside the point model.<br />

The technological innovation<br />

in survey<br />

techniques has nowadays<br />

led to the development of<br />

automated systems, with combined<br />

multi-functional sensors<br />

including laser scanning, GNSS<br />

receivers and imaging. These<br />

devices can per<strong>for</strong>m on field<br />

metric operations, ranging from<br />

spatial modelling, geo-referencing<br />

of objects in an assigned<br />

coordinate system, fast spatial<br />

reconstructions of interiors or<br />

exteriors and roofs, with the<br />

Fig. 1 - Nadir and oblique images.<br />

related thematic in<strong>for</strong>mation<br />

(colour, materials, decay).<br />

The automatic sensors allow<br />

to mainly collect point clouds,<br />

from the ground, from road<br />

vehicles or small remotely piloted<br />

aircraft (Unmanned Arial<br />

Systems). This redundant mass<br />

of data simplifies the survey<br />

process, increasing productivity<br />

<strong>for</strong> 3D modelling and derived<br />

sub-products (vector-raster),<br />

such as perspective views, elevations,<br />

orthophotos, horizontal<br />

and vertical sections, thematic<br />

maps, etc.<br />

Present technologies and<br />

techniques<br />

Point clouds are today the first<br />

source of spatial in<strong>for</strong>mation<br />

(also texturized with colours or<br />

reflected energy). The clouds<br />

are generated by automated<br />

survey techniques, without<br />

contact, and represent the basis<br />

<strong>for</strong> creating the so-called Digital<br />

Surface Models.<br />

Terrestrial and air-transported<br />

laser scanning has been till now<br />

the main way to generate online<br />

point clouds; more recently,<br />

the research in Computer<br />

Vision has deeply trans<strong>for</strong>med<br />

imaging survey, allowing the<br />

off-line extraction of point<br />

clouds from image blocks. One<br />

speaks in this case of Dense<br />

Image Matching, referring to<br />

the software procedures which<br />

guarantee this technologic enhancement.<br />

It is known that the point cloud<br />

collection does not occur in a<br />

deterministic <strong>for</strong>m, as manual<br />

surveys (the meaningful points,<br />

only), but in a stochastic way,<br />

with the surveyed points which<br />

become the nodes of a sampling<br />

grid superimposed over the objects.<br />

The grid step depends on selected<br />

spatial resolution, measurement<br />

distance, laser beam<br />

impact (normality, obliquity)<br />

and morphologic surface irregularities.<br />

The transition from the grid<br />

nodes to the interest points is<br />

then per<strong>for</strong>med by applying local<br />

interpolation processes.<br />

Much is known and has been<br />

written these years about scanning<br />

systems and associated<br />

16 Special Supplement to <strong>GEOmedia</strong> Journal Issue n. 3-<strong>2016</strong>

<strong>INTERGEO</strong><br />

Fig. 2 - Direct geo-referencing <strong>for</strong> scanning survey.<br />

procedures, much less, perhaps,<br />

about the bi-centennial imaging<br />

survey. This technique was<br />

indeed overcome at the end<br />

of the previous century by the<br />

advent and fast development of<br />

laser scanning and only recently<br />

it is coming back thanks to<br />

Computer Vision support and<br />

to remotely piloted aircrafts.<br />

However, this cannot be considered<br />

a return to the past but<br />

rather a “back to the future” (as<br />

written by someone), because<br />

the technological scenario has<br />

now significantly changed (processing<br />

algorithms and so on).<br />

Laser technology nevertheless<br />

provides the relevant advantage<br />

(thanks to the measured stationpoint<br />

distance) that just one<br />

single ray has to be reflected<br />

from an object point <strong>for</strong> its 3D<br />

determination; on the contrary,<br />

imagery survey needs at least<br />

two homologous reflected rays<br />

(from different sensor locations)<br />

<strong>for</strong> each object point and some<br />

measured in<strong>for</strong>mation on the<br />

point model, as well.<br />

Additionally, if problems arise<br />

in laser scanning applications,<br />

regarding reflective, transparent<br />

and translucent surfaces (metals,<br />

marble, paints, glass, etc.),<br />

also <strong>for</strong> imagery approach the<br />

surveyed objects must present a<br />

meaningful geometry and thematic<br />

characters, such as nonuni<strong>for</strong>m<br />

or not smooth and<br />

monochrome surfaces and few<br />

shadows.<br />

These conditions are necessary<br />

to allow automatic recognition<br />

of homologous points among<br />

corresponding frames: the<br />

process is per<strong>for</strong>med by means<br />

of digital image correlation algorithms,<br />

with the support of<br />

epipolar geometry to speed up<br />

the search.<br />

The acquisition phase registers a<br />

block of photos, longitudinally<br />

and transversally overlapped according<br />

to the type of selected<br />

survey (2D or 3D) (fig. 1):<br />

aerial nadir or oblique images<br />

are collected through horizontal<br />

strips (ground survey) together<br />

with normal or oblique shootings<br />

belonging to vertical strips<br />

(façade survey).<br />

The aerial carrier brings survey<br />

sensors and navigational devices<br />

(GNSS+INS) <strong>for</strong> recording realtime<br />

position and attitude of<br />

the photo-camera: this enables<br />

both autonomous flights, via<br />

pre-defined way-points, and a<br />

geo-referencing process based on<br />

GNSS-RTK or PPK techniques<br />

(the so-called Direct<br />

Photogrammetry).<br />

Remotely piloted small<br />

aircrafts (UAS) are vertical<br />

take-off and landing carriers,<br />

with hovering functions (the<br />

so-called multi-rotorcrafts), or<br />

fixed-wing aircrafts. All systems<br />

are equipped with a stabilized<br />

plat<strong>for</strong>m to overcome spatial<br />

rotations produced by flight,<br />

air turbulence or wind, and can<br />

carry a payload, that is the sensors<br />

<strong>for</strong> survey.<br />

The UASs allow lower flightheights,<br />

compared with<br />

manned aircrafts; so, a larger<br />

image scale is collected, with<br />

the same value of camera focal<br />

length, and higher levels of detail<br />

and height accuracy.<br />

Certainly, the lower flight<br />

height increases the <strong>for</strong>ward<br />

motion effects on the image, resulting<br />

in blurring phenomena;<br />

it is possible to limit this problem<br />

both by reducing the cruise<br />

speed and well combining<br />

stops, shutter time and sensitivity<br />

(ISO) of the digital sensor.<br />

So, the motion blur can be kept<br />

within the pixel size of the photo<br />

and the relative object settlement<br />

inside the GSD parameter<br />

(Ground Sampling Distance).<br />

Some experiences regarding<br />

multi-sensor survey <strong>for</strong> territory<br />

documentation were recently<br />

per<strong>for</strong>med at the University<br />

of Bergamo by the Geomatics<br />

group: two applications of them<br />

are described below.<br />

Fig. 4 - A 3D view of the point model <strong>for</strong> the ancient bridge.<br />

Fig. 5 - 3D model: a bank of the Brembo river with hotels and restaurants.<br />

Special Supplement to <strong>GEOmedia</strong> Journal Issue n°3-<strong>2016</strong> 17

<strong>INTERGEO</strong><br />

The first experience:<br />

the multi-scale survey<br />

of S. Pellegrino Terme<br />

This application regards the<br />

multi-scale survey with terrestrial<br />

laser scanning realized over<br />

the urban land of S. Pellegrino<br />

Terme, a small ancient town<br />

close to Bergamo (northern<br />

Italy).<br />

Advanced laser-scanning technologies<br />

were used, with a<br />

remarkable attention to the<br />

needed level of detail and with<br />

a careful look at buildings, their<br />

decorations and history. The<br />

reconstructed model was also<br />

utilized to create a virtual walkthrough<br />

<strong>for</strong> land investigation.<br />

The per<strong>for</strong>med survey has<br />

pointed out the original development<br />

of this settlement, designed<br />

<strong>for</strong> leisure and wellness,<br />

which was followed early by<br />

a gradual decadence that only<br />

new ideas and a renewed love<br />

<strong>for</strong> the site could overcome.<br />

The standards <strong>for</strong> urban model<br />

construction and management<br />

(city modelling) were proposed<br />

by the Open Geospatial<br />

Consortium (OGC) with the<br />

CityGML: these models are<br />

typically multi-scale 3D applications,<br />

ranging from landscape<br />

simulation to urban planning,<br />

from managing calamities to<br />

safety monitoring, etc.<br />

A modelling process requires<br />

the selection of geometric entities<br />

according to the chosen<br />

level of detail (LoD) and the<br />

attribution of textures <strong>for</strong> augmenting<br />

realism. This way,<br />

the survey approach <strong>for</strong> S.<br />

Pellegrino Terme documentation<br />

was established, together<br />

with the set of data to collect.<br />

It is known that laser scanning<br />

and imaging provide a dense<br />

object-point cloud, which can<br />

be geo-referenced in an assigned<br />

coordinate system. The geo-referencing<br />

is per<strong>for</strong>med either indirectly,<br />

through control points<br />

Fig. 6 - Orthographic elevations of the Spa-buildings, extracted from the point model.<br />

(pre-marked and measured on<br />

the object) and matching procedures<br />

based on natural features,<br />

or directly using satellite positioning<br />

and orientation devices.<br />

The localization quality is enhanced<br />

through differential<br />

positioning techniques via<br />

Internet corrections (code or<br />

phase), transmitted from a<br />

GNSS reference networks: a<br />

few centimetre accuracy (at<br />

95% likelihood) is guaranteed,<br />

either interactively via a RTK<br />

approach or in Post-Processing<br />

(PPK). In the described application,<br />

the GNSS reference<br />

network (NetGeo), by Topcon<br />

Positioning, was used.<br />

The direct geo-referencing,<br />

without control points and an<br />

alignment phase, is particularly<br />

convenient in applications<br />

regarding large areas (requiring<br />

several scans) when a level<br />

of detail equal or lower than<br />

LoD2-3 (likewise the scale<br />

1:200 or smaller) is required.<br />

Obviously, where the satellite<br />

signal is not guaranteed, due to<br />

urban obstructions, indirect or<br />

mixed geo-referencing have to<br />

be applied.<br />

Anyway, it is useful to select<br />

some check points (CP), among<br />

the control points (GCP), to<br />

assess the final accuracy of the<br />

process.<br />

Figure 2 shows the adopted<br />

scheme <strong>for</strong> capturing direct georeferenced<br />

object points: a laser<br />

scanner was used (Faro) and<br />

two satellite receivers (Topcon),<br />

fitted with a bracket respectively<br />

over the scanner and on an orientation<br />

point; both the receiv-<br />

18 Special Supplement to <strong>GEOmedia</strong> Journal Issue n. 3-<strong>2016</strong><br />

Fig. 7 - A view of the monastic complex in Albino

<strong>INTERGEO</strong><br />

ers, which operated in staticrapid<br />

mode, were connected via<br />

Internet to NetGeo <strong>for</strong> a fine<br />

RTK positioning in the Italian<br />

reference system (ETRF 2000).<br />

The set of direct geo-referenced<br />

scanning stations also provided<br />

a pseudo GNSS network, able<br />

to act as a geodetic support.<br />

The collected point clouds were<br />

altogether 200, with an average<br />

spatial resolution of 100 mm in<br />

the useful range (10÷350) m;<br />

the computer storage has been<br />

globally around 26 GB.<br />

S. Pellegrino Terme, a small<br />

tourist settlement today, was<br />

very fashionable last century<br />

in the world of entrepreneurial<br />

bourgeoisie. The town is located<br />

along the narrow Brembo<br />

valley (north of the city of<br />

Bergamo): famous <strong>for</strong> the healing<br />

waters, it stands out in the<br />

local landscape with the undisputed<br />

charm of its architectures<br />

and the elegance of the urban<br />

environment.<br />

Among the artistic treasures,<br />

it must be remembered the<br />

municipal Club-House (1904-<br />

1906), with two towers reminiscent<br />

of the famous one in<br />

Monte Carlo (Principality of<br />

Monaco), and the impressive<br />

Grand Hotel (1904), along the<br />

Brembo river, with the large<br />

front full of decorations.<br />

The Grand Hotel is connected<br />

to the Club-House and the Spa<br />

buildings, located on the right<br />

bank of the river, through the<br />

bridge “Principe Umberto I”.<br />

All these structures were realized<br />

at the beginning of the<br />

nineteenth century in the<br />

years of Belle Époque and Art<br />

Nouveau.<br />

The terrestrial scanning survey<br />

was per<strong>for</strong>med in a multi-level<br />

detail, ranging from OGC-<br />

LoD2 and OGC-LoD4, and<br />

corresponding to the scales<br />

from 1:500 to 1:100.<br />

A Faro laser scanner (Focus<br />

X330) was utilized, with a builtin<br />

photo-camera; this scanner,<br />

characterized by a long range<br />

(around 350 m), is particularly<br />

effective <strong>for</strong> 3D survey of large<br />

territorial spaces because it allows<br />

a meaningful reduction<br />

of the instrumental stations<br />

needed to capture in<strong>for</strong>mation<br />

(see figures 3, 4, 5, 6).<br />

Good results were generally<br />

obtained, despite some deficiencies<br />

in the building-roof<br />

documentation, thanks to the<br />

favorable hilly morphology and<br />

the large range provided by the<br />

scanning device.<br />

The roof knowledge could be<br />

better realized through an additional<br />

survey from above, using<br />

UAS techniques.<br />

The other experience:<br />

the UAS survey of the<br />

Dehonian complex<br />

The religious complex of<br />

Dehonian fathers, is located in<br />

Albino, a small town in the valley<br />

of Serio, the river flowing<br />

down from the mountains surrounding<br />

Bergamo.<br />

This Apostolic school was<br />

built in 1910; during the years<br />

of World War II it became a<br />

kind of big ark hosting people<br />

evacuated from their homes<br />

and moved to Albino, which<br />

was considered safer from the<br />

bombing risk.<br />

In 1944 a part of the complex<br />

was occupied by the Italian military,<br />

who remained there until<br />

early 1945; during the war, the<br />

little town was bombed but the<br />

Apostolic school was luckily<br />

spared.<br />

In the following years, until<br />

1991, the structure served as<br />

Diocesan Seminary; when this<br />

activity ceased, the complex of<br />

buildings was renovated to create<br />

a meeting point <strong>for</strong> spirituality<br />

(fig. 7), still active.<br />

The imaging survey (using a<br />

hexa-copter) aimed to provide a<br />

Fig. 8a – The flight planning <strong>for</strong> the nadir image coverage.<br />

Fig. 8b – Vertical strips with oblique images.<br />

spatial model of the built area,<br />

including roofs, <strong>for</strong> documentation<br />

and maintenance purposes.<br />

The model, with a level of<br />

detail equal to 1:200 scale, was<br />

per<strong>for</strong>med by:<br />

- a nadir image coverage with<br />

horizontal (parallel) strips (fig.<br />

8a) from heights less than 50<br />

m, taken by a Sony photocamera<br />

with a 14.2 MP CMOS<br />

sensor (fixed focal length of 16<br />

mm); the image overlaps were<br />

between 80% and 60% and the<br />

carrier speed around 5 m/s.<br />

- some up and down vertical<br />

strips over the façades, with<br />

oblique images taken at a surface<br />

distance around 10 m (fig.<br />

8b).<br />

It is known that an image-based<br />

survey can be per<strong>for</strong>med using<br />

algorithms, techniques and<br />

software ranging from those of<br />

Special Supplement to <strong>GEOmedia</strong> Journal Issue n°3-<strong>2016</strong> 19

<strong>INTERGEO</strong><br />

Fig. 9 - Software <strong>for</strong> imaging.<br />

classical Photogrammetry to<br />

the modern ones of Computer<br />

Vision; some well-known packages<br />

<strong>for</strong> imaging are shown in<br />

figure 9.<br />

The collected nadir and oblique<br />

images <strong>for</strong> the religious complex<br />

(fig. 10), around 400 photos,<br />

were used to generate a 3D<br />

model through a dense image<br />

matching, per<strong>for</strong>med inside the<br />

Swiss-made Pix4D Mapper, a<br />

software of Computer Vision.<br />

About thirty Ground Control<br />

Points, <strong>for</strong> block adjustment<br />

and geo-referencing (Italian<br />

Reference System - ETRF 2000),<br />

Fig. 10 - The set of collected nadir and horizontal images.<br />

were targeted over some selected<br />

details (on ground and<br />

roofs), measured by direct<br />

topographic methods (accuracy<br />

equal to a few centimetres) and<br />

then observed over the images.<br />

Figure 11 points out the georeferenced<br />

orthomosaic per<strong>for</strong>med<br />

from the set of photos<br />

and regarding the main cloister;<br />

figure 12 shows the correspondent<br />

3D reconstruction through<br />

a perspective view with phototextures.<br />

It is interesting to observe that<br />

the imaging model has resulted<br />

a bit more smoothed in comparison<br />

with those per<strong>for</strong>med<br />

through a laser scanning approach.<br />

Final remarks<br />

The described experiences have<br />

highlighted the great potentiality<br />

that laser scanning and<br />

UAS imagery can offer <strong>for</strong> a<br />

Fig. 11 - A geo-referenced orthomosaic <strong>for</strong> the main cloister.<br />

multi-scale analysis of urban<br />

land. This is the result of the<br />

meaningful development now<br />

achieved in the acquisition<br />

phase, the deep ease allowed by<br />

automation and the increased<br />

reliability. The software has<br />

once more had a central role <strong>for</strong><br />

an effective point cloud management<br />

and raster-vector production.<br />

The support of GNSS-<br />

RTK technology has been<br />

useful <strong>for</strong> cloud connection<br />

(direct and automatic); besides,<br />

GNSS and INS units represents<br />

a fundamental basis <strong>for</strong> autonomous<br />

aerial navigation and<br />

positioning. Surely, the integration<br />

between laser scanning and<br />

UAS imagery will become more<br />

and more interesting, to allow a<br />

complete photo-realistic model<br />

of urban environments; anyway,<br />

some security aspects have to be<br />

still improved in relation to aircraft<br />

standards and flights.<br />

Acknowledgements<br />

The authors wish to thank the<br />

students Lorenzo Filippini,<br />

Riccardo Begnis and Daniela<br />

Piantoni, who developed their<br />

master theses in Building<br />

Engineering, and Eng. Giorgio<br />

Ubbiali of DMStrumenti <strong>for</strong><br />

the technological support in the<br />

measurement campaign.<br />

Fig. 12 - A 3D view regarding the reconstructed photorealistic model of the complex.<br />

20 Special Supplement to <strong>GEOmedia</strong> Journal Issue n. 3-<strong>2016</strong>

<strong>INTERGEO</strong><br />


B. Bhandari, U. Oli, N. Panta, U. Pudasaini (2015) -<br />

Generation of high resolution DSM using UAV images - FIG<br />

Working Week 2015 - Sofia - May 2015<br />

L. Colombo, B. Marana (2015) - Terrestrial multi-sensor survey<br />

<strong>for</strong> urban modelling - Geoin<strong>for</strong>matics, 3-2015<br />

H. Hirschmueller (2011) - Semi-Global Matching -<br />

Motivation, developments and applications - Proceedings of<br />

Photogrammetric Week 2011, Stuttgart - Wichmann<br />

J.N. Lee, K.C. Kwak (2014) - A trends analysis of image processing<br />

in Unmanned Aerial Vehicle International Journal of<br />

Computer, In<strong>for</strong>mation Science and Engineering, 8(2)<br />

M. Naumann, G. Grenzdoerffer (<strong>2016</strong>) - Reconstructing a<br />

church in 3D - GIM International, 2-<strong>2016</strong><br />

R. Pacey, P. Fricker (2005) - Forward Motion Compensation<br />

(FMC) - Photogrammetric Engineering & Remote Sensing,<br />

November 2005<br />

R. Szeliski (2011) - Computer Vision: Algorithms and applications<br />

- Springer - New York<br />


The paper deals some experimental benchmarks regarding urban environment<br />

modelling. The first application has been per<strong>for</strong>med over the small<br />

thermal settlement of S. Pellegrino Terme, famous in northern Italy both<br />

<strong>for</strong> the healing waters and <strong>for</strong> its rich Art Noveau architectural decorations;<br />

the second test is the documentation of the religious complex of<br />

Dehonians in Albino, a little town close to Bergamo (Italy).<br />

The employed techniques, which automatically collected point clouds<br />

and created the DSM, are terrestrial laser scanning, with a direct GNSS-<br />

RTK geo-referencing, and UAS imagery.<br />

AUTHOR<br />

Luigi Colombo<br />

Luigi.colombo@unibg.it<br />

Barbara Marana<br />

Barbara.marana@unibg.it<br />

University of Bergamo<br />

DISA - Geomatics Group<br />

Dalmine (Italy)<br />


Land documentation; point-cloud analysis; laser scanning;<br />

UAS imagery<br />

Special Supplement to <strong>GEOmedia</strong> Journal Issue n°3-<strong>2016</strong> 21

<strong>INTERGEO</strong><br />

Welcome to the ZEB REVOlution<br />

by Stuart Cadge<br />

In this article we will introduce<br />

the ZEB-REVO, and the attributes<br />

that make this a unique piece<br />

of surveying hardware. We will<br />

discuss how the ZEB-REVO is<br />

shaking up the surveying market,<br />

Fig. 1 - The ZEB-REVO in action – handheld, pole-mounted, backpack-mounted – a<br />

truly versatile tool.<br />

and will look at a number of<br />

industry applications in which the<br />

ZEB-REVO is making a difference.<br />

The surveying industry<br />

has witnessed rapid<br />

changes in the last<br />

few years - the increased use<br />

of mobile surveying devices<br />

and the utilisation of LiDAR<br />

technology (Light Detection<br />

And Ranging) to produce 3-dimensional<br />

point clouds of the<br />

survey subject are two such examples.<br />

Another major shift is<br />

the mapping of indoor spaces,<br />

utilising technology that does<br />

not rely on GPS.<br />

Leading the <strong>for</strong>e in all of these<br />

technologies is GeoSLAM,<br />

a young, vibrant technology<br />

company based in the UK.<br />

GeoSLAM <strong>special</strong>ises in the<br />

manufacture and supply of<br />

indoor, handheld mobile surveying<br />

units; the ZEB1 and the<br />

new ZEB-REVO, launched in<br />

March <strong>2016</strong>.<br />

Strong Beginnings<br />

GeoSLAM was founded in<br />

2012 as a joint venture between<br />

CSIRO (Australia’s National<br />

Science Agency and the inventors<br />

of WiFi) and 3D Laser<br />

Mapping (a leading global provider<br />

of 3D LIDAR solutions).<br />

Coming from such strong pedigree<br />

has allowed GeoSLAM to<br />

grow rapidly in both range and<br />

scope, currently incorporating a<br />

global distribution network of<br />

35 agents across 6 continents.<br />

GeoSLAM launched their first<br />

mobile scanner, the ZEB1, in<br />

Q4 of 2013. With its springmounted<br />

head and nodding<br />

movement, the ZEB1 quickly<br />

Fig. 2 - Comparison of ZEB1 data (left) and ZEB-REVO data (right) Image courtesy of Opti-cal<br />

Survey Equipment.<br />

gained notoriety and popularity.<br />

Early adopters were amazed<br />

by the speed of scanning, the<br />

ease of use and the quality<br />

of the results. Data processing<br />

was also a simple process<br />

– customers simply ‘drag and<br />

drop’ their raw datasets onto<br />

an online Uploader, in order to<br />

register and process their scan.<br />

In a matter of minutes, fullyregistered<br />

3D point clouds were<br />

obtained.<br />

However, GeoSLAM did not<br />

rest on their laurels. The technology<br />

industry moves quickly,<br />

and GeoSLAM knew that a<br />

second, more sophisticated<br />

solution was required. ZEB1<br />

customers spoke of their desire<br />

<strong>for</strong> a truly-mobile scanner –<br />

one that wasn’t just handheld.<br />

They also wanted a fuller,<br />

more even point cloud that the<br />

40Hz ZEB1 could produce.<br />

When the customers spoke,<br />

GeoSLAM listened.<br />

The REVOlution Begins<br />

In March <strong>2016</strong>, the ZEB-<br />

REVO was launched. Featuring<br />

an in-built motor to create<br />

360 o rotation, the REVO can,<br />

like the ZEB1, be handheld.<br />

However, it can also be mounted<br />

onto an extending pole,<br />

fastened to a backpack, secured<br />

to a trolley or vehicle, even<br />

strapped to a UAV <strong>for</strong> aerial<br />

surveys.<br />

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Fig. 3 - Building surveys (such as this family-sized home) are completed in minutes, not hours, with the ZEB-REVO.<br />

The autonomous motion of<br />

the motorised scan head opens<br />

up a world of new applications<br />

<strong>for</strong> this clever little scanner.<br />

Little being the operative word;<br />

weighing just over 4kg (including<br />

the backpack) and with the<br />

scanner head measuring 9 x 11<br />

x 29cm, this is a surveying tool<br />

that is truly mobile.<br />

It’s not just the outside that<br />

has evolved – inside the scanner<br />

head is a powerful yet safe<br />

(Class 1 Eye safe) 100Hz laser –<br />

making an impressive 100 rotations/second.<br />

The unit collects<br />

the same number of points per<br />

second as the ZEB1 – 43,200.<br />

So what’s the advantage of this<br />

faster speed?<br />

The increased scan speed (over<br />

2.5 times faster than the ZEB1)<br />

means that the collected data<br />

points are spread out more<br />

evenly over a greater number of<br />

scan lines - giving the appearance<br />

of smoother, cleaner and<br />

less noisy datasets. More importantly,<br />

this even distribution of<br />

points allows the world-beating<br />

SLAM algorithm to work better.<br />

The SLAM algorithm works<br />

by dividing the scanned surface<br />

into sectors, and identifying<br />

points within each sector. If a<br />

sector is devoid of points, then<br />

it cannot be included in the<br />

algorithm. So, by having a more<br />

even distribution of points, the<br />

SLAM algorithm can build a<br />

fuller, more complete point<br />

cloud.<br />

The difference is clear to see.<br />

Compare the two images below<br />

of the same elevation. The view<br />

on the left is ZEB1 data, which<br />

is characterised by a striated,<br />

lined appearance. There are a<br />

few gaps, e<strong>special</strong>ly higher up<br />

the elevation where the scan<br />

lines have hit the elevation at a<br />

more acute angle.<br />

The right hand view is the<br />

same elevation captured with a<br />

ZEB-REVO. The point cloud<br />

is cleaner and the points are<br />

more evenly distributed – creating<br />

a much more ‘complete’<br />

looking point cloud. Not only<br />

does this provide better results,<br />

it also supplies the user with<br />

vitally important confidence in<br />

the kit.<br />

Versatility in Action<br />

The upshot of these technological<br />

advances is the sheer number<br />

of new applications and<br />

industries that are now open to<br />

scanning with the ZEB-REVO.<br />

Whether it is simply improving<br />

an existing workflow of the<br />

ZEB1 (i.e. stockpile surveys<br />

and building scans) or opening<br />

up brand new uses (i.e. manhole<br />

and suspended ceilings,<br />

utility trenches) versatility is the<br />

word <strong>for</strong> the ZEB-REVO. A<br />

number of these new and improved<br />

applications are featured<br />

below.<br />

Building Surveys<br />

Building surveys have long been<br />

the ‘bread and butter’ work of<br />

the ZEB1 – the simplicity, ease<br />

of use, highly mobile nature<br />

of the unit lends it perfectly to<br />

multi-level, indoor structures.<br />

The ZEB-REVO has simply<br />

improved and built upon this<br />

success.<br />

The increased scan speed creates<br />

a fuller, more complete point<br />

cloud, reducing the number of<br />

areas with low coverage. The<br />

ability to rapidly unscrew the<br />

handle and attach an extending<br />

pole allows the user to reach<br />

into spaces that may not otherwise<br />

have been available – into<br />

loft spaces, suspended ceilings,<br />

even to ‘poke’ the unit out of<br />

windows in order to obtain<br />

overlaps with the building exterior.<br />

Underground Mapping<br />

Another staple of the ZEB1,<br />

underground mapping includes<br />

both mine and cave surveys.<br />

Similarly to buildings, under-<br />

Fig. 4 - The ZEB-RE-<br />

VO in action – handheld,<br />

pole-mounted,<br />

backpack-mounted –<br />

a truly versatile tool.<br />

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ground is the perfect<br />

environment <strong>for</strong> ZEB<br />

systems, being devoid of<br />

GPS, totally enclosed, and<br />

often with many unique features<br />

<strong>for</strong> the SLAM algorithm<br />

to work with. Not only have<br />

ZEB systems been proven to increase<br />

survey quality and detail<br />

(over traditional survey methods),<br />

they have also slashed survey<br />

times by a factor of 3.<br />

A major advantage of the ZEB-<br />

REVO in these environments is<br />

safety – and the ability <strong>for</strong> the<br />

REVO to access areas that human<br />

users cannot. The autonomous<br />

nature of the ZEB-REVO<br />

allows the unit to be attached<br />

to a remote-controlled trolley<br />

system and sent into areas that<br />

are either too small to access,<br />

or that are hazardous to health.<br />

The image shows the ZEB-<br />

REVO head mounted onto the<br />

front of a remote-controlled<br />

trolley in a mine. The datalogger<br />

sits just behind the head<br />

in the body of the trolley. The<br />

trolley was sent into a restricted<br />

area of the mine that was inaccessible<br />

to people, allowed to<br />

scan, and returned to its starting<br />

position.<br />

Stockpiles<br />

Another area of application<br />

where both the ZEB1 and<br />

ZEB-REVO excel. With these<br />

mobile scanning units, stockpiles<br />

of all varieties can be surveyed<br />

in a matter of minutes.<br />

The survey data can then be<br />

easily imported into a variety of<br />

third party software packages,<br />

where volumetric calculations<br />

can be carried out in minutes.<br />

The advantages of the REVO<br />

in this application are complete<br />

coverage and continuous scanning.<br />

A potential pitfall of using<br />

the ZEB1 <strong>for</strong> stockpile scanning<br />

was the chance that areas<br />

would be missed, e<strong>special</strong>ly the<br />

very top of the pile. It is not<br />

advisable to walk on the stockpile<br />

<strong>for</strong> obvious safety reasons.<br />

There<strong>for</strong>e, a pole-mounted<br />

ZEB-REVO can be utilised to<br />

ensure that complete coverage<br />

of the stockpile is obtained,<br />

allowing <strong>for</strong> a complete point<br />

cloud model, and there<strong>for</strong>e, a<br />

more accurate volume calculation.<br />

The second major advantage<br />

is the ability to simply<br />

wall-mount the unit. For many<br />

stockpile applications (and particularly<br />

<strong>for</strong> indoor stockpiles),<br />

continuous analysis of the<br />

stockpile is required. With a remotely<br />

operated, wall-mounted<br />

unit, this is now a reality. It is<br />

simply a case <strong>for</strong> the unit to be<br />

switched on when a survey is<br />

required, and the autonomous<br />

motion will carry out the scan.<br />

The 360 o vertical by 270o horizontal<br />

field of view (i.e. just a<br />

90o blind spot to the rear) ensures<br />

that no parts of the pile<br />

are missed..<br />

Marine<br />

A rather newer application <strong>for</strong><br />

the ZEB systems is in the world<br />

of marine surveying. Anybody<br />

who has been on a marine vessel<br />

will know that space is at a<br />

premium; this is even more so<br />

when it comes to submarine<br />

vessels.<br />

A number of marine authorities<br />

and businesses have a requirement<br />

to accurately but rapidly<br />

survey their stock, either <strong>for</strong><br />

the purposes of creating 2-dimensional<br />

blueprints, or <strong>for</strong> the<br />

creation of 3-dimensional, fully<br />

interactive models.<br />

Both the ZEB1 and the ZEB-<br />

REVO can be rapidly deployed<br />

in a marine environment, and<br />

used to create a 3-dimensional<br />

point cloud of these hugely<br />

complex environments.<br />

Forestry<br />

Thought that ZEB units were<br />

<strong>for</strong> indoor use only? Think<br />

again. The ZEB1 and ZEB-<br />

REVO work best in ‘enclosed’<br />

environments – not necessarily<br />

just indoor ones. A typical <strong>for</strong>est<br />

will naturally be considered<br />

to be an ‘enclosed’ environment<br />

by the unit, as the tree canopy<br />

creates a natural ‘ceiling’.<br />

Coupled with the proliferation<br />

of unique features that a <strong>for</strong>est<br />

holds, and it can be seen that<br />

<strong>for</strong>ests are the perfect environment<br />

<strong>for</strong> ZEB scanners.<br />

Over the summer of <strong>2016</strong>, a<br />

number of different <strong>for</strong>estry<br />

studies are being carried out<br />

using the ZEB-REVO scanner.<br />

The first of these studies, carried<br />

out by the Geography department<br />

of University College<br />

London (UCL), focussed on<br />

measuring small de<strong>for</strong>mations<br />

in the ground topography of a<br />

mechanically-harvested area of<br />

<strong>for</strong>estry.<br />

Fig. 5 - Stockpile scanning is made<br />

simple with the pole-mounted ZEB-REVO.<br />

Fig. 6 - Cross<br />

section through<br />

the engine room<br />

of a marine vessel<br />

captured with<br />

the ZEB-REVO.<br />

24 Special Supplement to <strong>GEOmedia</strong> Journal Issue n. 3-<strong>2016</strong>

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Fig. 7 - 3D data<br />

of a vehicle<br />

captured with<br />

the ZEB-REVO<br />

in minutes.<br />

The suspicious<br />

package is highlighted<br />

red.<br />

From the data collected, the<br />

team were able to create a cmaccurate<br />

digital elevation model<br />

(DEM) spanning 100s of square<br />

metres. This data is then being<br />

used to measure the outputs of<br />

methane (CH 4<br />

) from these areas<br />

of felled <strong>for</strong>estry.<br />

Another study, conducted in<br />

relation with the University of<br />

Leicester, involves the mapping<br />

of varying <strong>for</strong>estry habitats<br />

across the UK. The aim of this<br />

study is to make comparisons<br />

between different <strong>for</strong>estry habitats<br />

across the UK, and also to<br />

combine the data captured with<br />

the handheld ZEB-REVO with<br />

data captured from above, using<br />

spaceborne-rader and UAVbased<br />

imagery.<br />

On a simpler note, both ZEB<br />

units can be utilised to rapidly<br />

and accurately scan an area of<br />

<strong>for</strong>estry, to obtain the point<br />

cloud data, and to make cuts or<br />

sections in the data at certain<br />

heights. One such important<br />

height is the breast height diameter<br />

(BHD), which is a measurement<br />

taken at 4.5 foot from<br />

the ground. This measurement<br />

is then used to create an estimate<br />

<strong>for</strong> the biomass of the area<br />

of <strong>for</strong>estry in question.<br />

Security and Contingency<br />

Mapping<br />

A final and possibly unexpected<br />

use <strong>for</strong> both ZEB units<br />

is in the ever-growing realm<br />

of security. In an increasingly<br />

uncertain world, governments,<br />

police <strong>for</strong>ces, security agencies<br />

and indeed even companies are<br />

increasingly security-conscious<br />

and are turning to new technologies<br />

to increase their security.<br />

ZEB1 units have been in use by<br />

a number of police <strong>for</strong>ces since<br />

their launch in 2013. Their<br />

speed, ease of use and high<br />

mobility make them the perfect<br />

tool <strong>for</strong> capturing the details of<br />

a crime scene, accident scene, or<br />

<strong>for</strong> mapping a building or site<br />

of interest. In the case where<br />

speed is of the essence (<strong>for</strong> example,<br />

after a RTC on a major<br />

road) the ZEB unit can be deployed<br />

in seconds, with a scan<br />

complete in a few minutes. This<br />

allows <strong>for</strong> a fully 3 dimensional<br />

image, accurate to within a few<br />

centimetres, to be gained.<br />

The development of the autonomous<br />

ZEB-REVO<br />

has obvious benefits in<br />

these areas. In the case<br />

of a crime scene, the polemounted<br />

ZEB-REVO may be<br />

deployed, to ensure that areas<br />

of interest are not touched or<br />

disturbed.<br />

Where there is a risk to human<br />

health (<strong>for</strong> example, a bomb<br />

threat, or an unsecure building),<br />

the REVO can be trolley<br />

mounted (as in mining) and<br />

sent in alone to scan the area of<br />

interest.<br />

It is our prediction that the<br />

realms of security and reconnaissance,<br />

there will be increasing<br />

demand <strong>for</strong> this type of<br />

rapid, mobile, versatile surveying<br />

tools.<br />

The Future<br />

So what does the future hold<br />

<strong>for</strong> GeoSLAM? In a rapidly<br />

growing, rapidly changing<br />

industry, standing still is<br />

quite simply not an option.<br />

GeoSLAM will continue to<br />

respond to new challenges, new<br />

technological developments,<br />

and to identify new areas of application.<br />

Be sure to pay attention<br />

to <strong>for</strong>thcoming GeoSLAM<br />

announcements, to hear more<br />

about these highly exciting developments<br />

in the pipeline.<br />


GeoSLAM; ZEB-REVO; scan<br />


GeoSLAM is a manufacturer and supplier<br />

of handheld, 3D mobile mapping<br />

systems. Founded in 2012 and<br />

headquartered in the UK, GeoSLAM now<br />

has a global distribution network of 35<br />

distributors across six continents.<br />

AUTHOR<br />

Stuart Cadge,<br />

Pre Sales Engineer at GeoSLAM<br />

For more in<strong>for</strong>mation, please visit<br />

www.geoslam.com<br />

info@geoslam.com<br />

Fig. 8 - Point<br />

cloud data of an<br />

area of <strong>for</strong>estry<br />

with a section<br />

taken at BHD<br />

height <strong>for</strong> biomass<br />

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26 Special Supplement to <strong>GEOmedia</strong> Journal Issue n. 3-<strong>2016</strong>

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Special Supplement to <strong>GEOmedia</strong> Journal Issue n°3-<strong>2016</strong> 27

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Study and development of<br />

a GIS <strong>for</strong> fire-fighting activities<br />

based on INSPIRE directive<br />

by Andrea Maria Lingua, Marco Piras,<br />

Maria Angela Musci, Francesca<br />

Noardo, Nives Grasso, Vittorio Verda<br />

In the past years, the European Union has<br />

invested in the development of the INSPIRE<br />

Directive to support environmental policies<br />

and actually EU is currently working on<br />

developing "ad hoc" infrastructures <strong>for</strong> the<br />

safe management of <strong>for</strong>ests and fires.<br />

Fig. 1 – External model definition.<br />

The activities connected<br />

to the <strong>for</strong>est-fire fighting<br />

could be essentially<br />

divided in three parts: be<strong>for</strong>e,<br />

during and after the fire.<br />

In these activities, the most<br />

complex are the monitoring and<br />

management of at-risk fire zones<br />

and fire-fighting procedures e<strong>special</strong>ly<br />

<strong>for</strong> large fires (> 40ha).<br />

In the case of “big fire”, which<br />

are fires with a very large extension,<br />

the main problem is the<br />

coordination between the human<br />

resources (ground, marine<br />

and air) which work to fight<br />

the fires. This aspect is more<br />

critical when the fire is across<br />

the boundary, because there is<br />

not a European protocol <strong>for</strong><br />

interventions and each country<br />

has different procedures and<br />

CONOPS (concept of operations).<br />

Thus becomes clear the<br />

complex reality that competent<br />

authorities must handle in such<br />

emergencies (Andrews and Rothermel<br />

1982; Bovio 1993; Teie<br />

2005).<br />

The AF3 project (Advanced Forest<br />

Fire Fighting) is part of the<br />

7 th Framework Program and it is<br />

focused on the prevention and<br />

the management of big <strong>for</strong>estfires<br />

through the development<br />

of innovative techniques. The<br />

AF3 purpose is to improve the<br />

efficiency of fire-fighting operations<br />

in progress and the protection<br />

of human lives and heritage<br />

by developing innovative technologies<br />

to ensure the integration<br />

between existing and new<br />

systems. Furthermore, the AF3<br />

project aims to increase interoperability<br />

among firefighting<br />

supports (Chuvieco et al 2010).<br />

The project defines a unique<br />

control center devoted to coordinate<br />

all activities, from monitoring<br />

to the intervention on<br />

field. Among the technological<br />

aspects, the project provides the<br />

design of an SDI plat<strong>for</strong>m (Spatial<br />

Data Infrastructure) which<br />

is essentially based on a GIS<br />

(Geographic In<strong>for</strong>mation System).<br />

In the following sections,<br />

GIS model proposed <strong>for</strong> a part<br />

of the system will be described.<br />

This GIS is structured according<br />

to INSPIRE ( Infrastructure <strong>for</strong><br />

Spatial In<strong>for</strong>mation in Europe)<br />

Directive.<br />

Fig. 2 Steps to create AF3 Database in PostgreSQL and Q-GIS.<br />

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GIS and fire-fighting: a<br />

brief description of the<br />

European scenario<br />

Currently, in Europe there are<br />

already several GIS useful <strong>for</strong> decision<br />

support at different stages<br />

of fire management. However,<br />

the opportunity to have both<br />

updated or real-time data, and<br />

a complete and consistent in<strong>for</strong>mation,<br />

is often missing. E<strong>special</strong>ly<br />

it is difficult to have an<br />

actual data interoperability with<br />

the existing available technologies.<br />

In most cases, the in<strong>for</strong>mation<br />

collected in the GIS are incomplete<br />

and they concern only<br />

one phase of the overall management<br />

process. There are, indeed,<br />

systems used, exclusively,<br />

<strong>for</strong> prediction or <strong>for</strong> planning or<br />

emergency control. In this way, a<br />

lot of in<strong>for</strong>mation is lost. However,<br />

this historical in<strong>for</strong>mation<br />

could be helpful to make more<br />

comprehensive the tool <strong>for</strong> decision<br />

support. Furthermore, it<br />

lacks a central system to register<br />

distribution and availability of<br />

resources in risk periods, standardized<br />

systems <strong>for</strong> fires registry<br />

and systematic registration systems<br />

of firefighting operations.<br />

Finally, the metadata of the observed<br />

maps are not always available<br />

and the data validity is impossible<br />

to be determined.<br />

For example, in Europe, Web-<br />

GIS known as EFFIS (European<br />

Forest Fire In<strong>for</strong>mation System<br />

http://<strong>for</strong>est.jrc.ec.europa.eu/effis/)<br />

was developed by the JRC<br />

(Joint Research Centre). This<br />

GeoDB, still under construction,<br />

records only the data related<br />

to fire risk analysis and the<br />

occurred fires in Europe.<br />

Description of the GIS in AF3<br />

In order to propose an innovative<br />

GIS plat<strong>for</strong>m devoted to<br />

support the big <strong>for</strong>est fires management,<br />

the following activities<br />

must be considered: <strong>for</strong>ecasting,<br />

monitoring, planning, active<br />

fight and post-fire practices.<br />

Nowadays, the modern system is<br />

not designed <strong>for</strong> a specific enduser<br />

and it stands out <strong>for</strong> its versatility.<br />

However, it is possible to<br />

establish different authorization<br />

<strong>for</strong> different users and method<br />

of use.<br />

In order to realize the dedicated<br />

GIS <strong>for</strong> AF3, the traditional<br />

modelling process was followed.<br />

As well known, needs to pass<br />

from the complexity of the reality<br />

to a <strong>for</strong>mal schema describing<br />

entities and tools used in<br />

fire-fighting operations.<br />

External Model<br />

The first step was the development<br />

of an external model. In<br />

this model, the useful in<strong>for</strong>mation<br />

could be gathered in three<br />

categories of objects: the competent<br />

authorities (command), the<br />

objects to be protected (territory),<br />

the event and the ignition<br />

point (fire and hotspot) (Figure<br />

1). In the case of AF3, there<br />

is only one control center that<br />

handles local operations centers,<br />

the terrestrial and aerial troops.<br />

The command center (command<br />

center) is the national control<br />

center. Local operations centers<br />

(operating center) are in charge to<br />

monitor and to fill register of the<br />

fire cadaster and the mission report.<br />

Instead, the teams (operating<br />

team) take care of active fight<br />

on the field.<br />

Conceptual and<br />

Logical Model<br />

(INSPIRE oriented)<br />

Next steps are the definition<br />

of conceptual and logical models.<br />

There<strong>for</strong>e, these stages consist<br />

in identification of entities,<br />

attributes, definition of relationships<br />

between the entities and<br />

the data <strong>for</strong>mats. The INSPIRE<br />

directive, thus, provides fundamentals<br />

<strong>for</strong> completely defining<br />

the in<strong>for</strong>mation layers closely<br />

related to the land description<br />

(e.g. digital terrain model and<br />

digital surface model), the event<br />

progression (e.g. time) and meteorological<br />

data (e.g. wind<br />

direction and speed, temperature,<br />

humidity). This European<br />

specification has a general nature,<br />

which needs to be suitably<br />

extended <strong>for</strong> adapting to the<br />

specific application. Some “ad<br />

hoc” entities are added in order<br />

to consider the data related to<br />

the command chain, fuel model<br />

and <strong>for</strong>est types definition (Burgan<br />

et al, 1998; Baskets 1999<br />

Baskets 2002; Han Shuting et al<br />

1987).<br />

Currently, it is necessary to<br />

highlight that in Italy, as in Europe,<br />

a systematic survey and<br />

monitoring of the <strong>for</strong>ests are<br />

missing. Moreover, standardized<br />

methodology <strong>for</strong> the preparation<br />

of suitable fuel models does<br />

not exist.<br />

Fig. 3 – Flow-chart of<br />

alarm trigger.<br />

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Considering these aspects,<br />

an approximation<br />

on the fuel models has<br />

been done. In particular, in<br />

Italy, the only achieved result is<br />

a regional classification of <strong>for</strong>est<br />

types, but it cannot be considered<br />

equally valid <strong>for</strong> the calculation<br />

of the danger indexes. The<br />

development of this <strong>issue</strong> would<br />

improve our capacity of fire <strong>for</strong>ecasting<br />

and, consequently, in the<br />

fire-fighting management.<br />

Fig. 4 – Example of query: hotspot and operating centre localization (left) and operating<br />

team localization (right).<br />

Internal Model<br />

Open source plat<strong>for</strong>ms were<br />

chosen to implement the database.<br />

Specifically, PgAdmin<br />

III were used to manage the<br />

database PosgreSQL with its<br />

spatial extension PostGIS and<br />

the graphical interface. This<br />

software allows the creation of<br />

tables and relationships, the<br />

implementation of triggers and<br />

queries, the realization of views<br />

<strong>for</strong> users and different uses and<br />

finally the semi-automatic input<br />

of data. This system is not<br />

equipped with a graphical interface<br />

to visualize the spatial data,<br />

there<strong>for</strong>e a connection with Q-<br />

GIS was realized.Thus, the procedure<br />

of GeoDB implementation<br />

follows the steps shown in<br />

Figure 2.<br />

A peculiarity of the internal<br />

model was the trigger, which is<br />

an “ad hoc” procedure <strong>for</strong> the<br />

automatic manipulation (insertion,<br />

modification and deletion)<br />

of in<strong>for</strong>mation related to a triggering<br />

event (Perry 1990). To<br />

complete the automatic management<br />

of the entire system, a<br />

large number of triggers must<br />

be implemented. Below as example,<br />

it has been described the<br />

"trigger" that starts when fire<br />

alarm is activated.<br />

In this specific case, when the<br />

alarm is recorded in the system,<br />

the program executes the procedure<br />

schematically shown in the<br />

flow-chart in Figure 3.<br />

Case of study (Sardinia)<br />

Data<br />

In order to test the GIS functionalities,<br />

a specific test site has<br />

been selected. In particular, a<br />

database related to South part of<br />

the Sardinia (close to Cagliari)<br />

has been considered.<br />

There<strong>for</strong>e, defined a specific<br />

area, all fundamental data have<br />

been collected, where the most<br />

important in<strong>for</strong>mation are the<br />

state of the <strong>for</strong>ests, fuel models,<br />

water resource localization,<br />

roads and technological networks,<br />

command center, operational<br />

centers, teams, meteorological<br />

data, hotspots, alarm<br />

have been inserted.<br />

Using these in<strong>for</strong>mation layers,<br />

which are suitably designed and<br />

compiled, using QGIS, it was<br />

possible to realize an example<br />

of a query on the system. Since<br />

the alarm is activated (Figure 4<br />

- left), the trigger is able to automatically<br />

calculate the competent<br />

command center, the<br />

nearest operating center, with<br />

the adapted number of men and<br />

assets. Finally, in real- time, data<br />

of the team and its location can<br />

be displayed (Figure 4 - right).<br />

On the field, the team will be<br />

monitored and managed by<br />

the command center, by means<br />

of the automatic registration<br />

of their coordinates (Figure 5),<br />

measuring in real time the team<br />

position.<br />

Conclusion<br />

The developed GIS model describes<br />

only a part of the “fire<br />

prevention and management<br />

system” provided by the AF3<br />

project, but its complexity is<br />

Fig. 5 – Example<br />

of query<br />

and trigger<br />

visualization.<br />

Real time team<br />

positioning on<br />

the field.<br />

30 Special Supplement to <strong>GEOmedia</strong> Journal Issue n. 3-<strong>2016</strong>

quite evident. E<strong>special</strong>ly,<br />

it underlines that it is<br />

difficult (in some case<br />

almost impossible), to<br />

define exactly some entities<br />

(e.g. Fuel model or<br />

fuel moisture). Moreover,<br />

an unique European<br />

procedure does not exist,<br />

there<strong>for</strong>e it is very complicated<br />

to define the<br />

CONOPS and a system<br />

with a single command<br />

center.<br />

The proposed model<br />

shows that also the open<br />

source plat<strong>for</strong>ms allow<br />

to realize a complex SDI<br />

structure. The triggering<br />

system <strong>for</strong> the automatic<br />

procedures allows to add<br />

value to SDI, because it<br />

makes the system realtime<br />

responsive.<br />

Acknowledgements<br />

The authors would like<br />

to thank the CVVFF of<br />

Cagliari <strong>for</strong> their availability<br />

and data sharing.<br />

Furthermore they thank<br />

Dr. Raffaella Marzano<br />

from University of Torino<br />

<strong>for</strong> her help about<br />

fuel model and <strong>for</strong>est<br />

type and Dr. Cesti <strong>for</strong> his<br />

availability.<br />


Andrews, P.L.and Rothermel R.C. (1982), Charts <strong>for</strong> interpreting wildland fire behaviour characteristics. <strong>INTERGEO</strong> USDA For. Serv. Gen. Tech.<br />

Rep. INT-131.<br />

Bovio G., (1993), Comportamento degli incendi boschivi estinguibili con attacco diretto. Monti e Boschi, 4: 19-24.<br />

Burgan, R.E., Klaver, R.W. & Klaver, JM. (1998), Fuel Models and Fire Potential from Satellite and Surface Observations, International<br />

Journal of WiIdIand Fire, 8: 159-170.<br />

Cesti G., Cesti C. (1999), Antincendio Boschivo. Manuale operativo per l’equipaggio dell’autobotte. Musumeci, Quart, Aosta, vol 2.<br />

Cesti G., (2002), Tipologie e comportamenti particolari del fuoco: risvolti nelle operazioni di estinzione, Il fuoco in <strong>for</strong>esta: ecologia e<br />

controllo. Atti del XXXIX Corso di Cultura in Ecologia. Università degli Studi di Padova, Regione del Veneto, Centro Studi per<br />

l’Ambiente Alpino, S. Vito di Cadore, 2-6 settembre 2002: 77-116.<br />

Perry, D. G. (1990), Wildland Firefighting: Fire Behavior, Tactics, and Command, ed. Donald G. Perry.<br />

Teie, W. C. (2005), Firefighter’s Handbook on Wildland Firefighting, 3nd ed. Deer Valley. Chuvieco, E. et al., (2010). Development of<br />

a framework <strong>for</strong> fire risk assessment using remote sensing and geographic in<strong>for</strong>mation system technologies.<br />

Han Shuting, Han Yibin, Jin Jizhong, Zhou Wei (1987), The method <strong>for</strong> calculating <strong>for</strong>est fire behaviour index, Heilongjiang Forest<br />

Protection Institute, Harbin, China, 77-82.<br />

http://www.s3lab.polito.it/progetti/progetti_in_corso/af3 (08/10/2014)<br />

http://<strong>for</strong>est.jrc.ec.europa.eu/effis/ (08/10/2014)<br />

http://www.isotc211.org/ (06/11/2014)<br />

http://inspire.ec.europa.eu/index.cfm/pageid/2 (03/11/2014)<br />

http://www.postgresql.org (05/05/2015)<br />


INSPIRE directive; fire fighting; GIS<br />


According to the Annual Fire Report 2013 (European Commission-Joint Research Centre, 2014), there have been 873 <strong>for</strong>est fires in<br />

Europe, in 2013, <strong>for</strong> a total of 340559 ha of territory. A comparison of this data to that of the previous years, highlights that, when<br />

the intended goal is that of preserving the environment and saving human lives, the importance of the correct management of <strong>for</strong>est<br />

fires can not be underestimated. In the past years, the European Union has invested in the development of the INSPIRE Directive<br />

(Infrastructure <strong>for</strong> Spatial In<strong>for</strong>mation in Europe) to support environmental policies. Furthermore, the EU is currently working on<br />

developing "ad hoc" infrastructures <strong>for</strong> the safe management of <strong>for</strong>ests and fires.<br />

The AF3 EU project (Advanced Forest Fire Fighting), financed by the FP7, addresses the <strong>issue</strong> of developing innovative tools to handle<br />

all stages of <strong>for</strong>est fires. The project develops a single control center <strong>for</strong> the coordination of monitoring, manoeuvring, and post-fire<br />

operations. The SDI plat<strong>for</strong>m (Spatial Data Infrastructure) represents another component which was designed in the context of this<br />

project. It is based on a GIS (Geographic In<strong>for</strong>mation System) which is able to efficiently integrate multi-modal data.<br />

Following an analysis of the state of the art of in<strong>for</strong>mation systems <strong>for</strong> <strong>for</strong>est fire-fighting, and in light of the end-user requirements<br />

analyzed within the AF3 project, we propose a geo-topographic database based on the INSPIRE Directive and developed on opensource<br />

plat<strong>for</strong>ms, which provides interoperability of the data and allows <strong>for</strong>ecasting and monitoring of high-risk areas, decision making,<br />

damage estimation, and post-fire management.<br />

AUTHOR<br />

Andrea Maria Lingua<br />

Marco Piras, Maria Angela Musci, Francesca Noardo, Nives Grasso, Vittorio Verda<br />

Politecnico di Torino - Dipartimento di Ingegneria dell'ambiente,<br />

del territorio e delle infrastrutture (DIATI)<br />

Vittorio Verda<br />

Politecnico di Torino - DIpartimento di Energia (DENERG)<br />


This work has been presented at the 19th Conference ASITA 2015 (Lecco). We would like to thank the organizing secretary <strong>for</strong> the<br />

courtesy and his availability and wishes the best outcome <strong>for</strong> the 20th Conference ASITA <strong>2016</strong> (Cagliari 8-9-10 November <strong>2016</strong>).<br />

• Rilievi batimetrici automatizzati<br />

• Fotogrammetria delle sponde<br />

• Acquisizione dati e immagini<br />

• Mappatura parametri ambientali<br />

• Attività di ricerca<br />

Vendita – Noleggio - Servizi chiavi in mano, anche con strumentazione cliente<br />

Special Supplement to <strong>GEOmedia</strong> Journal Issue n°3-<strong>2016</strong> 31

<strong>INTERGEO</strong><br />

A survey from<br />

UAV in critical<br />

areas: the<br />

advantages of<br />

technology in<br />

areas with<br />

complex terrain<br />

by Zaira Baglione<br />

The tale of two experiences in the geological and cultural heritage area through the use of fixed-wing drones.<br />

Innovation and high quality of the data returned from an aero-photogrammetric survey as support to the activities of<br />

the different professionals. From the survey phase to the post-production all the precautions to obtain images with a<br />

very good resolution and solve obstacles <strong>for</strong> the mapping of areas not easily accessible such as quarries.<br />

The aerial photography<br />

have had a great revolution<br />

with the advent<br />

of the UAV technology that<br />

actually has allowed to overcome<br />

the objective problems of<br />

the access to the in<strong>for</strong>mation.<br />

E<strong>special</strong>ly <strong>for</strong> the territories<br />

with a complex topography, the<br />

use of drones is an advantage<br />

in terms of speed, cost reduction<br />

and achievement of high<br />

quality results. The applications<br />

of the proximity remote sensing<br />

in critical areas are a lot<br />

and involve many areas: from<br />

geology to engineering, from<br />

surveillance to environmental<br />

monitoring, civil protection,<br />

archeology and more.<br />

In particular it is recommended,<br />

<strong>for</strong> several reasons, the use<br />

of fixed-wing models <strong>for</strong> the<br />

survey of medium-high extension<br />

surfaces. Meanwhile, this<br />

type of APR provides a greater<br />

flying range than the multicopter<br />

models (which generally<br />

have shorter range, considering<br />

also the take-off and landing<br />

operations), in fact with a single<br />

flight it is possible to cover areas<br />

of several kilometers and obtain<br />

uni<strong>for</strong>m images, then with a<br />

very appreciable qualitative output;<br />

in addition the control of<br />

the flight parameters is efficient<br />

and it is possible to resists to the<br />

adverse environmental conditions,<br />

supporting wind gusts of<br />

up to 60 km/h. The fixed-wing<br />

aircraft, in general, are perfect<br />

<strong>for</strong> the applications in geology<br />

and archaeological surveys. Two<br />

interesting experiences, related<br />

respectively to the geological<br />

and cultural heritage area, are<br />

described below by Gabriele<br />

Santiccioli, FlyTop president<br />

and member of the Provincial<br />

Board of Surveyors and<br />

Surveyors Graduates of Rome.<br />

Certainly a very growing sector<br />

is the quarries monitoring<br />

through precise mapping activities<br />

to accurately control the<br />

excavations, to know exactly the<br />

amount of material removed<br />

and prevent any movement of<br />

materials and the risk of landslides.<br />

A proof of the quality<br />

of the remote control systems<br />

<strong>for</strong> this type of professional application<br />

is given by Gabriele<br />

Santiccioli, president of FlyTop,<br />

through a project carried out in<br />

a mining quarry in the north<br />

of Italy. "We enthusiastically<br />

accepted the engagement by<br />

the responsible Authority <strong>for</strong><br />

the exploitation of a quarry<br />

in Emilia Romagna - says the<br />

president Santiccioli - because<br />

it meant <strong>for</strong> us to win a challenge.<br />

This experimentation<br />

yook place in an extremely<br />

mountainous area, undoubtedly<br />

challenging under the aeronautical<br />

profile. We used a fixedwing<br />

aircraft, FlyGeo24Mpx,<br />

a unique drone in its category<br />

32 Special Supplement to <strong>GEOmedia</strong> Journal Issue n. 3-<strong>2016</strong>

<strong>INTERGEO</strong><br />

equipped with technology to<br />

fly at a fixed altitude. Generally<br />

this type of critical reconnaissance<br />

is carried out with a<br />

multirotor drone, but the fixed<br />

wing flexibility allowed us to<br />

successfully conclude the mission.<br />

The conditions were not<br />

easy, considering the extension<br />

of the area to be analysed, about<br />

95 hectares, and the difference<br />

in height of 360 meters between<br />

the top and the valley of<br />

the quarry. However, with a single<br />

flight, we have acquired in<br />

25 minutes nearly five hundred<br />

pictures with a resolution of 2.5<br />

cm per pixel ". With regard to<br />

the mining activity in the quarries<br />

it must be said that both<br />

private interests, relating to<br />

companies that hold the regional<br />

authorizations, both public<br />

are involved at the same time,<br />

considering that some of them<br />

represent a heritage that should<br />

be used in an intelligent<br />

manner and preserve the<br />

environment. The UAV is<br />

a good instrument from<br />

many points of view: it<br />

allows to rationalize the excavation<br />

areas on the basis<br />

Special Supplement to <strong>GEOmedia</strong> Journal Issue n°3-<strong>2016</strong> 33

<strong>INTERGEO</strong><br />

of what is known from<br />

the restitution of photos<br />

and the subsequent study<br />

and post-processing; they<br />

provide in<strong>for</strong>mation relating<br />

to the amount of material removed<br />

and, finally, they are the<br />

only possible solution to reach<br />

critical areas that may only be<br />

known with the conventional<br />

aerial photogrammetry systems<br />

and with inevitable higher costs.<br />

"In order to plan the operation<br />

we referred to a regional technical<br />

map (CTR) - continues<br />

Santiccioli - and we decided<br />

to set a fixed altitude of 130<br />

meters. Through some control<br />

points on the ground we made<br />

12 strips with an overlap of 70<br />

percent between each photo,<br />

acquiring one frame every 25<br />

meters. We got a 3D model of<br />

the quarry, a cloud of points,<br />

the DTM and DSM from the<br />

restitution and we processed all<br />

the photogrammetric data with<br />

a <strong>special</strong> software characterized<br />

by a very high level of metric<br />

accuracy. We can say that this<br />

result satisfied the client and<br />

FlyTop, that realized the work."<br />

The application of the UAV<br />

technology has grown significantly<br />

also <strong>for</strong> the cultural heritage<br />

sector, not only <strong>for</strong> monitoring<br />

and documentation,<br />

but e<strong>special</strong>ly <strong>for</strong> the discovery<br />

activities. With the partnership<br />

started between the University<br />

of Salento and FlyTop an<br />

archaeological survey was carried<br />

out in the Veio Park area,<br />

a few kilometers from Rome,<br />

in an area between the towns<br />

of Formello and Isola Farnese.<br />

Gabriele Santiccioli together<br />

with Professor of ancient topography<br />

Giuseppe Ceraudo describes<br />

the survey done with the<br />

fixed wing UAV FlyGeo24Mpx<br />

that led to the identification of<br />

ancient Etruscan and Roman<br />

settlements, in particular the<br />

remains of structures of buildings<br />

and streets.<br />

The discovery<br />

comes from a<br />

research project<br />

that the University<br />

of Salento leads<br />

<strong>for</strong> over ten years<br />

and had a decisive<br />

result last<br />

year following the<br />

mission that led<br />

to the discovery<br />

of a city system<br />

of Etruscan and<br />

Roman eras. The<br />

area covered by<br />

the flight (about<br />

<strong>for</strong>ty hectares) was<br />

overflown with a<br />

fixed-wing drone<br />

equipped with<br />

a 24Mpx digital<br />

camera with single<br />

focal length lens.<br />

The operation<br />

involved the town<br />

of Archi di Pontecchio and was<br />

carried out in compliance with<br />

ENAC specifications. The flight<br />

has enabled to acquire images<br />

of the highest quality, almost<br />

two hundred pictures with a<br />

resolution of 1.7 cm per pixel,<br />

geo-referenced and complete of<br />

3 parameters of translation and<br />

rotation. Through the captured<br />

frames there was a validation<br />

of what were until now only<br />

hypotheses; observing from the<br />

sky the differentiated growth of<br />

vegetation, in fact, it has been<br />

recognized part of the ancient<br />

Etruscan city of Veio.<br />

About the accuracy of aerial<br />

photogrammetric data Gabriele<br />

Santiccioli says: "Our company<br />

has always been committed to<br />

combine innovation and integration,<br />

so we have used all the<br />

instruments that the surveyor<br />

has, arriving until the production<br />

of maps of high technical<br />

quality in few hours. We have<br />

obtained a cloud of points, a<br />

3D model, the DTM and DSM<br />

from the elaborate digital images<br />

in order to know better<br />

the morphology of the land.<br />

Considering the future scenarios,<br />

I do not exclude that shortly<br />

the application of thermal and<br />

multispectral sensors will enter<br />

in the archaeological sector or at<br />

least one study focused on the<br />

result that could be achieved".<br />

The aero-photogrammetric<br />

proximity survey with the use<br />

of an APR represents an archaeological<br />

survey interesting<br />

landscape, as well as a real and<br />

accessible system <strong>for</strong> the study<br />

of preliminary research. Later,<br />

with subsequent investigations<br />

and excavations, it will be able<br />

to determine more accurately<br />

the reference period and other<br />

more detailed in<strong>for</strong>mations.<br />

The survey done in the quarry<br />

and the result of Veio demonstrate<br />

how the remote sensing of<br />

proximity through RPAS is advantageous<br />

in terms of time and<br />

costs, e<strong>special</strong>ly <strong>for</strong> particularly<br />

extended areas of inspection or<br />

not easily accessible.<br />

34 Special Supplement to <strong>GEOmedia</strong> Journal Issue n. 3-<strong>2016</strong>

<strong>INTERGEO</strong><br />

The aero-photogrammetric<br />

proximity survey with the<br />

UAV use represents an<br />

interesting vision of the<br />

archaeological survey, as<br />

well as a concrete and accessible<br />

system <strong>for</strong> the study<br />

of preliminary researches.<br />

Later, with subsequent<br />

investigations and excavations,<br />

it will be able to determine<br />

more accurately the<br />

reference period and other<br />

more detailed in<strong>for</strong>mation.<br />

Both the survey done in<br />

the quarry and the Veio<br />

result demonstrate how the<br />

remote sensing of proximity<br />

through the use of on<br />

UAV is useful in terms of<br />

time and costs, e<strong>special</strong>ly<br />

<strong>for</strong> particularly large areas<br />

of inspection or not easily<br />

accessible.<br />


UAV; cultural heritage;<br />

survey; aerophotogrammetry<br />


The tale of two experiences<br />

in the geological<br />

and cultural<br />

heritage area through<br />

the use of fixed-wing<br />

drones. Innovation<br />

and high quality of<br />

the data returned<br />

from an aero-photogrammetric<br />

survey<br />

as support to the activities<br />

of the different<br />

professionals. From<br />

the survey phase to<br />

the post-production<br />

all the precautions to<br />

obtain images with a<br />

very good resolution<br />

and solve obstacles <strong>for</strong><br />

the mapping of areas<br />

not easily accessible<br />

such as quarries.<br />

AUTHOR<br />

Zaira Baglione<br />

zaira@flytop.it<br />

Account manager<br />

Flytop<br />

Special Supplement to <strong>GEOmedia</strong> Journal Issue n°3-<strong>2016</strong> 35

<strong>INTERGEO</strong><br />

NEWS<br />

Sun, water and<br />

hydromethane:<br />

possible options<br />

<strong>for</strong> the energy<br />

future of the<br />

Smart Cities<br />

The Italian engineering company<br />

Geocart S.p.A. (www.geocart.net),<br />

in the context of the<br />

urban planning according to<br />

the "Smart Cities" approach,<br />

has focused its attention on the<br />

search <strong>for</strong> new solutions <strong>for</strong> the<br />

production of energy from renewable<br />

sources and resources<br />

and the development of innovative<br />

techniques <strong>for</strong> the monitoring<br />

of energy efficiency.<br />

The final objectives of the<br />

study are threefold:<br />

1. mapping of potential hydroelectric<br />

productivity<br />

from mini and micro-hydro<br />

plants;<br />

2. study on the feasibility of optimal<br />

hydromethane generation<br />

from renewable sources;<br />

3. analysis of the efficient use<br />

of solar resource on an urban<br />

scale.<br />

In addition to the estimation<br />

of the potential productivity<br />

of hydropower, the objective<br />

of the study is to understand<br />

the feasibility of optimal hydromethane<br />

generation from<br />

renewable sources and its use<br />

<strong>for</strong> public transport in urban<br />

areas or high environmental<br />

value areas. The activity aims<br />

to respond to market needs:<br />

the various existing technologies<br />

<strong>for</strong> hydrogen storage are<br />

not fully satisfactory in terms<br />

of efficiency, convenience and<br />

af<strong>for</strong>dability. A fundamental<br />

aspect of the activity is the generation<br />

of hydrogen-methane<br />

mixtures having a maximum<br />

hydrogen content of 30%<br />

by volume, easier to use than<br />

pure hydrogen: in fact, the hydromethane<br />

can be used in a<br />

normal natural gas engine.<br />

For the analysis of the solar<br />

potential of the urban area, the<br />

research is based on 3D mapping<br />

of city buildings, as a further<br />

instrument of knowledge,<br />

including <strong>for</strong> policy makers,<br />

of the effective potential use<br />

of solar resource on building<br />

patrimony, and as a policy instrument<br />

<strong>for</strong> the planning of<br />

new construction areas. In this<br />

context, particular attention is<br />

paid to the study of the energy<br />

exchanges of the urban area<br />

and the so-called urban heat<br />

islands.<br />

www.geocartspa.it<br />

(Source: Geocart)<br />

Location-based data<br />

and services enabling a<br />

geosmartcity<br />

Any smart-city implementation<br />

leveraging location-based data<br />

and services is undoubtedly<br />

reaching faster its sustainability<br />

aims. The EU co-funded project<br />

GeoSmartCity is contributing<br />

to this, establishing a cross-plat<strong>for</strong>m,<br />

re-usable and open hub<br />

in which different categories of<br />

users can discover and access interoperable<br />

geographic in<strong>for</strong>mation,<br />

by means of generic-purpose<br />

as well as <strong>special</strong>ized services<br />

based on open standards.<br />

The GeoSmartCity approach is<br />

applied in two different urban<br />

contexts (the Green-Energy scenario,<br />

to support the implementation<br />

of sustainable energy policies<br />

,and the Underground scenario,<br />

to support the integrated<br />

management of underground<br />

utility infrastructures) and tested<br />

by 11 pilots, consisting of<br />

cities/regions from 8 different<br />

Member States.<br />

The underlying layer of the<br />

overall GeoSmartCity architecture<br />

consists of interoperable<br />

georeferenced and semantically<br />

reach spatial datasets, which<br />

have been harmonized according<br />

to common data models<br />

which extend INSPIRE application<br />

schemas on Buildings<br />

and Utilities & Governmental<br />

Services and have been made<br />

discoverable and accessible by<br />

means of OGC webservices.<br />

http://www.epsilon-italia.it/IT<br />

(Source: Epsilon Italia)<br />

Leica Pegasus<br />

Backpack<br />

The Leica Pegasus:Backpack is<br />

an award-winning wearable reality<br />

capture sensor plat<strong>for</strong>m. A<br />

highly ergonomic design combines<br />

five cameras offering fully<br />

calibrated 360 degrees view and<br />

two LiDAR profilers with an<br />

ultra-light carbon fibre chassis.<br />

It enables extensive and efficient<br />

indoor or outdoor documentation<br />

at a level of accuracy that is<br />

authoritative and professional.<br />

This unique mobile mapping<br />

solution is designed <strong>for</strong> rapid<br />

and regular reality capture. It is<br />

completely portable, enabling it<br />

to be checked in as luggage on<br />

a flight. The Pegasus:Backpack<br />

is designed to act a sensor plat<strong>for</strong>m<br />

with our standard external<br />

trigger and sync port outputs.<br />

BIM – map indoors, outdoors,<br />

underground, anywhere<br />

The Pegasus:Backpack makes<br />

progressive professional BIM<br />

documentation a reality. It synchronises<br />

imagery and point<br />

cloud data, there<strong>for</strong>e assuring<br />

a complete documentation<br />

of a building <strong>for</strong> full life cycle<br />

management. By using SLAM<br />

(Simultaneous Localisation<br />

and Mapping) technology and<br />

a high precision IMU, it ensures<br />

accurate positioning with<br />

GNSS outages.<br />

Industrial training – realitybased<br />

in<strong>for</strong>mation <strong>for</strong> fast<br />

response Knowing and understanding<br />

a landscape be<strong>for</strong>e<br />

rushing into emergency situations<br />

can save lives. Document<br />

any site in 3D models and<br />

images <strong>for</strong> fast, safe and efficient<br />

response. Combined with<br />

Autodesk, Intergraph and other<br />

software, reality-based industrial<br />

training is enhanced with<br />

the most accurate and current<br />

data sets. Safety & security – in<strong>for</strong>med<br />

decisions in emergency<br />

situations<br />

The Pegasus:Backpack helps<br />

you to make better and faster<br />

decisions in emergency situations<br />

due to access to more accurate<br />

data. Evacuation plans<br />

and route mapping benefit<br />

from clear and detailed images<br />

and point clouds that alert authorities<br />

to any changes. Access<br />

densely populated areas, providing<br />

accurate and current mapping<br />

to give city authorities a<br />

clearer and deeper understanding<br />

of the situation.<br />

Natural disaster response – minimise<br />

damage and save lives<br />

For the first time, responders<br />

to natural disasters can capture<br />

disaster area data in 3D on foot.<br />

Faster response times translate<br />

into lives saved and damage<br />

minimised. Capture the critical<br />

data needed to make faster and<br />

better in<strong>for</strong>med decisions that<br />

increases chances of survival and<br />

reconstruction.<br />

Contact us <strong>for</strong> more in<strong>for</strong>mation<br />

or to request a demo.<br />

www.geomatica.it<br />

(Source: Teorema srl)<br />

36 Special Supplement to <strong>GEOmedia</strong> Journal Issue n. 3-<strong>2016</strong>



GEOSPATIAL 4.0 –<br />

BIG DATA<br />

GEOBIM –<br />


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UK<br />

PARTNER COUNTRY <strong>2016</strong><br />

Host: DVW e.V.<br />

Conference organiser: DVW GmbH<br />

Trade fair organiser: HINTE GmbH<br />


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