The higher the overlap ratio, the better the results of the overall operation. When constructing 3D models, the minimum possible front and side overlap ratio is 65%. For high-quality precision measurements, an overlap ratio of 95% is recommended. Flight automation software to assist in the collection of data at precise locations is recommended.
We recommend an initial flight pattern above the area in a grid pattern with the camera 0 degrees (straight down), followed by a series of circular flights around the object of interest to create the best models.
Lower the bird so that it is level with the height of the structure - with the camera at 90 degrees, straight out. Then fly a circle around the structure, keeping the drone at approximately a 15-foot distance from the structure. Fly a second time around the structure with a 45-degree camera angle and a 25-foot distance from the structure. Fly a third time around the structure with a 30-degree camera angle and a 35-foot distance from the structure.
For best results, a series of circular flights level with the antenna arrays is preferred, along with several circular flights at a greater radial distance.
Then repeat this technique one to two more times, depending on the structure height.
How to improve results
- Fly when the sun is at its peak so that the whole structure is fully lit. This reduces the likelihood of inconsistencies created from shadows.
- Higher overlap ratios typically result in higher resolution models.
- Autonomous flight plans are typically more successful than manual flight control.
- Be mindful of weather conditions that could affect your flight like high winds, rain and snow.