UAVs and Surveying

  • 16 Oct 2013
  • 12:00 PM
  • Webinar


  • Not a PSLS member
  • Any Individual who is a member of a professional society in the geospatial industry.
  • PSLS Members only
Online registration for this webinar is now closed.  If you wish to register, please contact Laurie at

 UAV's and Surveying 

Presented by: Dr. Joseph V.R. Paiva

UAVs, or more correctly unmanned airborne systems (UAS), are destined to become another high productivity tool in the surveyor’s proverbial toolbox. The technology is rapidly evolving, and many early users around the world are proving its worth in new applications and working out the many operational details.

In this webinar, we will begin with a discussion of what a UAS isundefinedit is not a remotely operated vehicle. We will also discuss types of UAS. We will then progress to some of the operational details, both as they pertain to a business that operates a UAS, as well as the details that field teams need to be expert at to use a UAS successfully. A UAS in addition to being a tool for surveyors is also a vehicle that operates in public airspace…thus while it is not necessary to be a pilot, it is necessary to have a competent pilot’s understanding of how airspace is managed, and some of the rules for operating in it. A discussion of UAS in surveying would not be complete without mention of the close range photogrammetric techniques that are used to create various mapping and survey products from the photographs taken in the air.

We will conclude with some of the regulatory issues surrounding UAVs. In the U.S. the Federal Aviation Administration, does not permit private commercial use of UAS. However most government and educational institutions can fly them with a permit. It is anticipated that the FAA’s OK for private commercial use of small UAS may be as soon as a year. Thus developing an understanding how a UAS might fit into a surveying business’ set of tools is a worthwhile and interesting business planning exercise.

PDH: 1.0
The New York Board of Surveyors has approved this webinar for 1 PDH.

Registration available: September 19, 2013

Registration Fees

PSLS Member: $40

Other Professional Society Member: $40

Non-member: $50

About the Presenter: 
Dr. Joseph V.R. Paiva, is principal and CEO at GeoSpatial Associates LLC, parent company of GeoLearn, which is an online provider of professional and technical education, with an expected launch in Fall 2013. He previously served as a consultant in the field of geomatics and general business, particularly to international developers, manufacturers and distributors of instrumentation and other geomatics tools. In that role Joe functioned as COO at Gatewing NV, a Belgian manufacturer of unmanned aerial systems (UAS) for surveying and mapping. Joe has also been managing director of Spatial Data Research, Inc., a GIS data collection, compilation and software development company; senior scientist and technical advisor for Land Survey research & development, VP of the Land Survey group, and director of business development for the Engineering and Construction Division of Trimble; vice president and a founder of Sokkia Technology, Inc., guiding development of GPS- and software-based products for surveying, mapping, measurement and positioning. Other positions include senior technical management positions in The Lietz Co. and Sokkia Co. Ltd., assistant professor of civil engineering at the University of Missouri-Columbia, and partner in a surveying/civil engineering consulting firm. He has continued his interest in teaching by serving as an adjunct instructor at the Missouri University of Science and Technology. His key contributions in the development field are: design of software flow for the SDR2, SDR20 series and SDR33 Electronic Field Books and software interface for the Trimble TTS500 total station. He is a Registered Professional Engineer and Professional Land Surveyor, is an ACSM representative to the Accrediting Board for Engineering and Technology (ABET), serving as a program evaluator where he previously served as team chair, and commissioner, and has more than 30 years' experience working in civil engineering, surveying and mapping. He writes for POB and The Empire State Surveyor magazines and has been a past contributor of columns to Civil Engineering News.

Dr. Paiva can be reached at or on Skype at joseph_paiva.
P: 717.441.6057 | F: 717.236.2046 |
908 N 2nd Street | Harrisburg, PA 17102   
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