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ECORP Advances in Unmanned Aerial Systems (UAS) Program

ECORP Consulting, Inc. is continuing to advance the capabilities of our unmanned aerial systems (UAS) program and have expanded to offer new ecological services to our clients. We have recorded over 80 flight missions since the beginning of the rainy season, mapping large projects in the greater Sacramento area. Our clients have been very pleased with the results, with aerial mapping resolution far superior to publically available source imagery.

We have also streamlined our UAS survey protocol and are capable of mapping over 600 acres in a single day at a resolution of 2” per pixel. For more targeted surveys, aerial photography can be collected at an even finer resolution of up to 0.2” per pixel. With daylight hours continuing to lengthen, the daily acreage and resolution we are able to achieve will continue to increase in the coming months. 

We have utilized this new tool to map wetlands and hydrologic episodes during this unprecedented water year, especially in northern California. Our ability to rapidly mobilize following storm events has allowed us to document significant fluctuations in water features and monitor them as they return to baseline conditions. This has created data which can be used in hydrology studies and for mapping jurisdictional wetland features. Capturing maximum inundation is particularly helpful for mapping the extent of flooding or even monitoring the success of created or preserved wetlands.

ECORP’s UAS data has also been useful for our clients looking to document erosion and sediment issues. For instance, the fine lines left after rainfall events can signal where erosion is taking place, aiding efforts  in identifying problem areas scattered over large acreages.

We have found our capacity to capture ultra HD 4K video to be a valuable tool as well. These videos can quickly provide an overview of a property or specific features, which we can deliver to our clients on the day they are recorded. This has allowed us to work with landowners and property managers to refine our survey efforts and to repeatedly sample and monitor areas of concern.

Mapping drainages and jurisdictional features, and documenting severe erosion events and inundations in El Dorado, Placer, and Sacramento Counties. Documenting engineered channels and bridges in Los Angeles County.

Looking ahead, we are excited to use our new UAS capabilities for the upcoming spring as plants begin to bloom. For example, there are currently several invasive plants flowering, such as black mustard, that lend themselves to aerial mapping which can assist in the management of these populations.  In addition, floral signatures can assist in vegetation community mapping efforts. We are offering these services to our clients in the coming months as more plant species enter their blooming periods.

We are also utilizing these tools to conduct vegetation and tree canopy mapping more accurately and efficiently. As we enter the warmer and brighter spring months, we will continue to discover new applications for this emerging technology and are eager to work with you to meet your aerial mapping, photography, and videography needs.

For more information contact Dave Krolick at (916) 782-9100.

See our Careers page for more Environmental Consulting Careers at ECORP.

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