A few days ago we had a pleasant conversation with a geofumed friend about the use I am now giving to reflectance, and if a robotics would help me in some way to minimize time. Here I summarize part of the talk.
We call it a robotic station.
In short, it is a team that has the functionality to search for the target on its own, sweeping it until it is found. These work with a manual collector that operates the station from the place where the prism is located.
Each brand already has toys that do this, the best I've seen in this are the Focus.
Sokkia I do not know if it already has with reflectance, but Topcom, both part of Ashtech.
When not to use it.
In conventional surveys, as is the case of cadastre, little use I see, at least for these two reasons:
1 It can be something slow. What happens, is that if the operator of the station leaves the equipment level, the manual collector is taken and goes with the prism to wait for the equipment to find it, it will take some surprises. One of them is that the device sweeps clockwise until it finds the prism, and if it is moving in the opposite direction, for each point it will give a sweep of almost complete revolution.
Maybe, as a friend said Geofumado, if these teams had a sensor that worked with a UHF frequency click, that did fast sweeps of 4 quadrants, so that it could locate the prism and then only make the sweep in that quadrant. This would save a lot of time.
2 Is not safe. This criterion was Smoked In part, thinking of countries where labor is expensive and it is possible to save the cadeneros. In this way, the surveyor becomes the operator of the station and also the one who walks the prism, also the one who carries the tripod, in his own bodyguard, in short, in the whole. But that criterion does not apply in Spanish-speaking countries that the cost of paying a chain is relatively low and where on the contrary of developed countries, the theft of total stations happens so you have an armed guard next to you.
When to use it.
The use that is seen practical is with Reflectance. This is that functionality brought by some modern stations, which sweep an entire area, as well as radar, and then this is processed as a three-dimensional mesh. The case would be for example, of a work where massive movement of earth, cuts, fillings is being done; with a sweep to the 6 of the morning the initial state would be had, being placed on the same point, to the 5 of the afternoon, in 5 minutes the calculation of the produced volume would be had.
Also for highly specialized jobs, such as the one that Leica announces, in the page of Hexagon (company that recently also Bought Intergraph).
If one of these days, the US Government hired them to do a study of every hole that has the nose of George Washington ... definitely a robotics is ideal.