Customer Profile: Q&D Construction

One of our construction customers.

innovative-virginia-street-bridgeLast year we did some sample work over the Virginia Street area of Reno’s Truckee River.  For fun, we created a “fly-through” of the 3-dimensional map (point cloud) and showed it at an American Society for Photogrammetry and Remote Sensing conference and who should walk up, but the engineer responsible for the construction of the new bridge.  He works for Q&D.

Virginia Street Bridge

Through that experience we met some guys from Q&D Construction who were building that bridge at the time.  They asked us to come to one of their most well known project areas: the Wild West Motorsports Park and surrounding areas located near Mustang, Nevada.   The track is often re-shaped to accommodate different types of races: motorcycles, trucks, etc all have different requirements and Q&D changes the track accordingly, and then changes it back when need be.  Thus, this is the most surveyed site Q&D has.

This was a Proof of Concept mission.  We asked if we could use the data (and the story) as promotional material.  Q&D said sure, but this wouldn’t be easy.  They wanted to see just how accurate our drone based mapping could be.  We shot for 1 centimeter around the track and in their storage yard, and 5cm for the surrounding areas.

cubThe data collection was a piece of cake.  We used a large Hexacopter for the 1cm areas and a Fixed wing plane for the surrounding areas. Within 2 days we had the whole site captured in roughly 100 gigabytes of photos.  We then processed the data on virtual machines created in the cloud.  After about 72 hours of straight processing we ended up with georectified orthomosaic maps and digital elevation maps at better than 1 centimeter of resolution.  Project complete?  Not yet.

Where Q&D’s regular surveying techniques provide one reference point for every 15 feet or so, our maps are three dimensional.  This means our super accurate maps had something like 30 points per square foot.  Just handing the results over to Q&D on a portable disk drive wasn’t acceptable as they didn’t have the GIS tools required to look at data of this nature.  AutoCAD can’t handle this level of detail.  So we helped them get started with QGIS, an open source GIS software suite.  After a while Q&D was able to evaluate the results in GIS terms.

While we were at it, we created a video inside the digital point cloud.  Note, again this isn’t a motion picture, this is flying around inside a 3d map:

Wild West Motorsports

Once complete and analysed by Q&D they found our work to be better than GPS surveys could do.  At the conclusion of the project Fred Hatcher Jr., the project leader for the experiment wrote us a great testimonial letter which concluded with the following:

“I can confidently recommend AboveNV as a solid and reliable supplier of UAV Mapping and Modelling services.”

In another project for Q&D we flew a camera drone for them to help create a video documenting where a bike trail near Lake Tahoe would be built.  This video, with editing and production from SoSuTV, was used as part of a bid process for the project.

Bike Path

We helped Q&D with a bidding project along the shore of Lake Tahoe.  The bid was for a walking path between Incline and Zephyr Cove.  Anyone who has been up there knows that the parking for Sand Harbor is very crowded in the summers and people would park along the highway.  This would make for some messy business as people hauling coolers and beach chairs would try to walk along the highway to get to a beach spot.  It’s now illegal to park along that stretch of highway so, temporarily, you can take a shuttle to Sand Harbor.  This walking path will help keep people off the street.

Q&D remains one of our first and most valued customers and we enjoy working with them whenever we can help.  In fact, we soon hope to help them spin up their own UAV mapping system for small jobs and inspections.  When a larger or more challenging project comes along, they know we will be there to help.

If you would like to know more about the services we provide or would like to examine the data we’ve collected for our proof of concept projects please give us a call!  (775) 525-1570