Aerial mapping of UK rail network nears completion

December 8, 2015  - By 0 Comments

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NM Group is nearing completion on an aerial mapping project covering more than 16,000 kilometers of United Kingdom rail network.

In 2014, NM Group was engaged to map the rail assets with a mix of high-tech laser measurement and imaging equipment, as part of a project to improve asset maintenance, operational effectiveness, efficiency and safety.

The project used a mix of specially commissioned lidar and high-resolution multi-angle cameras mounted on helicopters, carrying out aerial operations and ground-control activities over a four-month period and completing it before winter. The survey information was rapidly transported to NM Group’s Technology Centre in Knaresborough, North Yorkshire, where a team of specialists have been converting nearly a petabyte of raw data into a wide range of terrain, asset and imaging outputs.

“I am incredibly proud of the way our team has responded to this large and challenging project, completing the data capture within an unprecedented timescale and producing a high-quality output that will serve the rail network for years to come,” said NM Group’s CEO Kevin Jacobs.

NM Group’s contribution to the program provides the geospatial fabric on which other layers are overlaid, the basis for asset location mapping and the start point for the design of upgrades and modifications. Traditionally, this information would have been created by a visit to the site by a team of surveyors.

The new method will significantly reduce the need for future field work and trackside access. It will also facilitate more efficient maintenance, allowing crews to identify and access assets more safely and efficiently than in the past, via apps on a range of mobile devices, NM Group said.

NM Group is a specialist service provider of asset management, surveying and mapping solutions to sectors including energy transmission and distribution and road and rail transport. Applying a range of remote sensing and geospatial technologies, the company offers a full range of services from data acquisition through to analytics and web applications for wider access to information.

This article is tagged with , , , and posted in Featured Stories, GIS News, Imagery, Lidar, Mapping
Tracy Cozzens

About the Author:

Tracy Cozzens has served as managing editor of GPS World magazine since 2006. She also is editor of GPS World’s newsletters and the sister website Geospatial Solutions. She has worked in government, for non-profits, and in corporate communications, editing a variety of publications for audiences ranging from federal government contractors to teachers.

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