Using the Altitude Optimization Leg

Altitude Optimization Leg


The Altitude Optimization Leg is a set of photos captured at a 45-degree angle, following a path that leads to the center of a project area. 


Difference between a flight with altitude optimization leg (left) vs a flight without altitude optimization leg (right).

Why is it needed?

The altitude optimization leg is collected in order to capture a greater view of the flown area. These sets of photos are used to optimize the altitude accuracy of the photogrammetry reconstruction.

The Skycatch Explore1 drone already considers some degree of obliqueness when capturing the images thus removing the need for an altitude optimization leg.

For other drone models that support PPK and RTK corrections, this is a hard requirement to be included toward the end of the flight plan in order to achieve good accuracy in Z.



 Difference between a 45-degree angled photo (left) vs a zero-degree/nadir photo (right).


Key points to Remember:

  • The PPK / RTK accuracy of the altitude Optimization leg photos is very important.

    • To be sure that the altitude optimization leg works and optimizes accuracy, they must fulfill the same PPK/ RTK fix requirement as the other photos within the mission.

    • This implies that the success of the last captured photos of the mission has a greater impact on the overall Z accuracy for the photogrammetry.

    • For PPK, the altitude optimization leg must be covered by the base observation duration.

    • For RTK, the altitude optimization leg needs to have the RTK Fix status. This means that good quality RTK streaming must have been observed during the entire mission (start to finish).

  • The Timestamp.MRK file will confirm if the photos captured including the alt op leg contains a good RTK fix. Please see this article - FAQ: What Is The Timestamp.MRK File? for more information. 
  • They must cover visibility for the vast majority of the surface of interest.

    • This is easy to achieve if the shape of the polygon is not elongated. For elongated surfaces, we encourage dividing the mission into smaller individual missions thus having each sub-mission contain an altitude optimization leg. 

  • The Altitude Optimization Leg is enabled in Flight1 by default.

    • Experience a worry-free flight since this feature is enabled in Flight1 by default, thus eliminating cases when you forget to set it up.

    • When you plan PPK and RTK  missions from other flight apps, do not forget to consult your Drone/RC manual on how to enable this setting. 






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