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Working across the United States, Bridge & Stream often relies on online data to analyze project sites, including 10-meter USGS quadrangle maps, Google Earth aerial photography, and publicly-available LiDAR.  While easily accessible, this data can be outdated, too vague, or otherwise insufficient for the detailed needs of complex sites.  To supplement the online data, Bridge & Stream certified pilots utilize unmanned aerial systems (UAS, or “drones”) to gather elevation data and photos specific to project sites.

Drone technology has advance significantly in recent years, and is only getting better. In a matter of minutes, drones can collect aerial photos capable of producing highly detailed digital terrain models of the project site. This terrain data can be used in two-dimensional hydraulic models to analyze complex flow scenarios.

Drones can also be used to produce photographic and video documentation of project sites that can be used for communication and permitting purposes.  High quality and updated aerial photos can help identify site features such as wetlands, access restrictions, property boundaries, and engineering characteristics.

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