A few days ago we had a pleasant conversation with a geofumed friend about the use that I am now giving to reflectance, and if a robotics would help me in any way to minimize time. Here I summarize part of the talk.
We call it a robotic station.
In short, it is a device that has a functionality to search for the target on its own, scanning until it finds it. These work with a manual collector that operates the station from the place where the prism is located.
Each brand already has toys that do this, the best I've seen in this are the Focus.
Sokkia I do not know if it already has with reflectance, but Topcom, both part of Ashtech.
When not to use it.
In conventional surveys, as is the case of cadastre, little use I see, at least for these two reasons:
1. It can be a bit slow. What happens is that if the station operator leaves the equipment level, takes the manual collector and goes with the prism to wait for the equipment to find it, he will be in for some surprises. One of them is that the device sweeps in a clockwise direction until it finds the prism, and if it is moving in the opposite direction, for each point it will sweep almost a full turn.
Maybe, as a friend said GeofumadoIf these equipments had a sensor that works with a high frequency UHF, that would make fast 4 quadrant sweeps, so that it would locate the prism and then only sweep on that quadrant. This would save a lot of time.
2. It is not safe. This criterion was Smoked in part, thinking of countries where labor is expensive and it is possible to save chain workers. In this way, the surveyor becomes the station operator and also the one who walks the prism, also the one who carries the tripod, his own bodyguard, in short, the whole. But this criterion does not apply in Spanish-speaking countries where the cost of paying for a chaser is relatively low and where, on the contrary in developed countries, the theft of total stations happens even if you have an armed guard next to you.
When to use it.
The use that is seen practical is with reflectance. This is the functionality that modern stations bring, which scan an entire area, as well as radar, and then this is processed as a three-dimensional mesh. The case would be, for example, a work where massive earth movement, cuts, fillings are being carried out; With a sweep at 6 in the morning, the initial state would be obtained, standing on the same point, at 5 in the afternoon, in 5 minutes, the calculation of the volume produced would be obtained.
Also for highly specialized jobs, such as the one that Leica announces, in the page of Hexagon (company that recently also Bought Intergraph).
If one of these days, the US Government hired them to do a study of every hole that has the nose of George Washington ... definitely a robotics is ideal.