Develop Guidelines for the Use of Unmanned Aerial Systems (UASs) and Smartphones for Construction and Utility Inspections

Unmanned aircraft systems (UASs) equipped with miniaturized cameras enable the collection of high resolution, three-dimensional (3D) geospatial data at lower costs than traditional techniques. New technologies also make it possible to gather pictures and video using smartphones, which can be fed to Structure from Motion (SfM) software to develop highly accurate 3D products. Operating UASs requires trained pilots and observers, but smartphones do not. There is a need to test whether construction contractor crews in the field can gather data using either of these technologies and upload the imagery and video to a server to enable inspectors to conduct inspections remotely. The research teams will conduct a literature review of UAS-SfM and smartphone technologies; prepare a list of use cases and case studies to test relevant technologies; conduct field tests to document advantages, disadvantages, complementary capabilities, and potential implementation scenarios and costs; prepare recommended settings, procedures, use cases, and operational workflows to ensure repeatable data collection and processing; and prepare guidelines for quality assurance and control of inspections conducted with UAS- and smartphone-based SfM photogrammetry, as well as identify project suitability for the adoption of these technologies to support construction and utility inspection activities at Texas Department of Transportation (TxDOT).


  • English


  • Status: Active
  • Funding: $821,986
  • Contract Numbers:


  • Sponsor Organizations:

    Texas Department of Transportation

    125 E. 11th Street
    Austin, TX  United States  78701-2483
  • Managing Organizations:

    Texas Department of Transportation

    125 E. 11th Street
    Austin, TX  United States  78701-2483
  • Project Managers:

    Dassi, Martin

  • Performing Organizations:

    Texas A&M Transportation Institute

    Texas A&M University System
    3135 TAMU
    College Station, TX  United States  77843-3135

    Texas A&M University - Corpus Christi

    6300 Ocean Dr.
    Corpus Christi, Texas  United States  78412
  • Principal Investigators:

    Quiroga, Cesar

  • Start Date: 20220901
  • Expected Completion Date: 20250831
  • Actual Completion Date: 0

Subject/Index Terms

Filing Info

  • Accession Number: 01863353
  • Record Type: Research project
  • Source Agency: Texas Department of Transportation
  • Contract Numbers: 0-7159
  • Files: RIP, STATEDOT
  • Created Date: Nov 3 2022 5:23PM