Home Geospatial Applications Miscellaneous Ordnance Survey aerial camera unit moves to new base

Ordnance Survey aerial camera unit moves to new base

UK: Ordnance Survey (national mapping agency of the UK) moved its aerial photography unit at a new site, East Midlands Airport, with two aircrafts, which will capture high-quality aerial imagery from the highlands of Scotland to the south coast. The unit will stay at the new site for next three years.

The mapping agency uses the aerial imagery to update the master map of the country, which records over 5,000 changes every single day. Having relocated from Blackpool International Airport for the 2012 flying season, Ordnance Survey has used aircraft to record changes to the landscape for over fifty years. In the early days, it operated from a number of different bases across the country, but the move to East Midlands brings together all the Flying Unit resources in one place. The two aircraft, a Cessa 402 and Cessna 404, carry cameras which record change at a highly detailed level.

The Ordnance Survey aircraft could be in the sky any time from March to November capturing some 50,000 high resolution images which are used to update the mapping database of the country, update our aerial photography mapping products and capture change which is included in our most detailed mapping. They use cameras which are among the highest resolution in the country recording 196 megapixels on each image. Over the course of the 2011 flying season, the cameras captured over 51,000 useable frames including those covering all the Olympic sites and 140 other target areas.

Tony Mabey, Head of Remote Sensing at Ordnance Survey, said, “We have moved to make commercial and operational efficiencies connected to the current contract with the aircraft service provider, RVL Group, who has recently opened a new purpose-built hanger at East Midlands Airport. As a world-class mapping agency, it is important for us to be making the most of the technology and the opportunities to update our mapping as cost effectively and efficiently as we can.”

Source: Ordnance Survey