Land River Sea Consulting has been spending a considerable amount of time and resources as of late researching and developing skills in the area of Structure From Motion (SFM), an exciting new technique that is able to convert a series of photographs taken from different angles and positions with a standard digital camera into a detailed 3D scale model.  When combined with accurate ground control points this technique can be used to develop accurate digital elevation models (as accurate as LiDAR), generate georeferenced, orthorectified photos for use within GIS, and the generation of detailed 3D computer models and fly over videos.  The process is cost effective, fast and reliable.

The photographs can be taken from a range of sources, including hand held cameras, helicopter, aeroplane and UAV (drones).  The closer the photos are taken to the ground, the greater the accuracy will be of the resulting 3D reconstruction.  

Land River Sea Consulting has been experimenting in processing images taken from drones fitted with high resolution cameras and has succesfully produced a range of outputs.   Most significantly a large section of the Waiho River in the West Coast of the South Island was flown and the data was quickly turned into an accurate DEM of the river bed.  This DEM has been cross checked with survey data and found to be very accurate within centimetres.  

SFM has a wide range of potential uses, including:

  • Generating accurate detailed digital elevation maps (DEMS) for use within a 2D hydrualic model
  • Updating aerial photographs for localised areas.
  • Updating LiDAR datasets in small localised areas where changes have taken place.
  • Generating 3D models and high resolution fly through videos - great for public presentations.
  • Monitoring changes in volume over time (ie in quarries, gravel river beds, coastal erosion etc)

To the right are a range of examples of outputs which have been produced to date.  If you would like to learn more about the process we would be happy to discuss this technique in more detail at any time.  Land River Sea Consulting has the capacity to capture the images as well as carry out the processing, or can advise you on how to best capture the images and carry out only the processing. 


To view the videos in high definition - click on the vimeo button.

Orthorectified Photo of the Camelback Quarry