Camera Calibration Considerations using Bullabulling’s Golden Pipeline Water section

Ainslea Kipling

Located 526km East of Perth in the Goldfields-Esperance region is the old town site of Bullabulling. Access to water in the Bullabulling area was stumbled upon by prospector John Aspinall on his way to seek his fortune in the Eastern Goldfields in March 1895.

Bullabulling is  very close to the Golden Pipeline Water Supply Scheme. The Scheme is historically significant as it has delivered water to Western Australia’s eastern goldfields from Mundaring Weir since 1903. The pipeline was commissioned in 1896 and the Engineer commissioned to carry out this significant project was C.Y. O’Connor. The "Golden Pipeline" is ranked as one of Australia’s greatest engineering achievements.

This project aims to conduct an Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (UAV) survey of the Bullabulling’s Golden Pipeline Water section. Capturing long objects using photogrammetry can lead to systematic errors (doming effects) making the survey of pipelines using drones challenging. The cause of the doming effect is inaccurate interior orientation (IO) camera parameters in particular radial distortion parameters, and can be overcome applying an appropriate calibration method. This project investigated three different methods – using a calibration frame, using orbit flights in different heights, and a standard in-situ calibration – and their effects on the magnitude of the doming effect.


Golden Pipeline Drone Mapping

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