Tuesday at the AFB80 summer meeting was jam packed with presentations on small UAS, a visit to the Caltrans Transportation Lab and then detailed presentations on autonomous surface vehicles for hydrographic mapping, mobile lidar, ground penetrating lidar and subsurface utilities.
The morning opened with a detailed presentation
on the careful work being done by Dr. Riadh Munjy on the use of sUAS by Caltrans. They have established a field test site with dense ground control where they are testing the use of cameras and structure from motion software. They hope to establish three more.
Lewis Graham from AirGon gave his usual excellent presentation on the state-of-the-art in sUAS from someone who is flying and selling them everyday. David Unkefer from FHWA gave a National State of the Practice report and Curtis Clabaugh reported on extensive research he had done on the legal aspects of flying drones.
Caltrans has a brand new GPR that they are using to assess pavement conditions around the state. The unit works great in dry sand, but not at all in wet clay. Jim Anspach provided a report on the heroic work he has been doing on subsurface utility engineering. There is a lot of resistance to the work that needs to be done, but Jim is not letting that stop him.
Wednesday is autonomous vehicles, mobile lidar and a discussion of future research interests of the committee.