Airborne ground penetrating radar

Geophysical applications on environmental investigation, mineral prospecting, engineering, archaeology, forensics, hydrology...
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topgpr
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Airborne ground penetrating radar

Post by topgpr »

Is it possible? I know the energy conversion efficiency can't be as good as those ground-coupled GPR, but there are a lot of areas simply not feasible for ground scanning, such as heavily vegetated or wooded areas. Any thoughts about airborne GPR?

ngoijog
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Re: Airborne ground penetrating radar

Post by ngoijog »

Airborne GPR has been tested and used, but not widely available due to the operational cost and limited applications. It has been reported that airborne GPR has been used to detect vehicles and structures under dense tree coverage. It's also a good way to detect underground mines, but accurate positioning is still a challenge for small targets.

nsm
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Re: Airborne ground penetrating radar

Post by nsm »

Without contracts from military or government agencies, it's hard for any gpr manufactures to do research and development on airborne gpr. Maybe Niitek will be the first one to develop a commercially available airborne gpr since they already got contracts from military for mine detecting.

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geophix
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Re: Airborne ground penetrating radar

Post by geophix »

Due to the limited penetrating depth, it will not got much money from the mining industry, either.

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Re: Airborne ground penetrating radar

Post by nsm »

NIITEK announced today that it has been awarded a contract by the US Army worth potentially $18M for 102 RVIS Systems, associated parts and services. The RVIS system is an remote viewing system (i.e., from another vehicle) for the Husky Mounted Detection System (HMDS) which utilizing an advanced, high-performance GPR to detect both non-metallic and metal-cased buried threats. I guess this system could potentially be used in an helicopter. Maybe the airborne GPR will be their next step.

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Re: Airborne ground penetrating radar

Post by gmradar »

There are some companies using airborne gpr for snow and ice thickness measurements but there are certainly a lots of limitations with the method.
Geomorph Instruments,
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https://www.gmradar.com/#/

99thpercentile
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Re: Airborne ground penetrating radar

Post by 99thpercentile »

If you have a lot of money, Mirage Systems will take it to do this. They market almost exclusively to DoD.
Ryan E. North, PhD, RPG, GISP
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topgpr
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Re: Airborne ground penetrating radar

Post by topgpr »

I checked Mirage Systems' website. It says they use Synthetic Aperture Radar (SAR). What's the unique about this kind of GPR? They use high precision GPS and also 3-axis inertial sensor, that's probably the right way to go for positioning.

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Re: Airborne ground penetrating radar

Post by 99thpercentile »

In my opinion they oversell its capabilities, specifically depth of penetration.
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nsm
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Re: Airborne ground penetrating radar

Post by nsm »

A lot of companies oversell their products. It's the nature of the beast. :D

BigDuke6
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Re: Airborne ground penetrating radar

Post by BigDuke6 »

Well my company has developed aerodataGPR that operates at 1metre to 12 metres with effective penetration up to 25 metres its data can be viewed in real time from anywhere around the world with our onboard communications, so if anyone is interested please drop me a line contact@aerodatagpr.com

ADobrovolskiy
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Re: Airborne ground penetrating radar

Post by ADobrovolskiy »

We supply airborne GPR systems in 5 configurations - 1GHz (new product), 500MHz, 124MHz, 80Mhz, 52Mhz center frequency. GPR integrated with drone's control/navigation system, operator can see current data, start/stop recording.

Lot of data samples can be found here - https://drive.google.com/open?id=1eL09s ... waqp8CCdY2

More details here - https://industrial.ugcs.com/gpr

ADobrovolskiy
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Re: Airborne ground penetrating radar

Post by ADobrovolskiy »

There are my posts here on forum with data and survey description

viewtopic.php?f=2&t=4250 - gas pipes survey

viewtopic.php?f=2&t=4244 - freshwater bathimetry

viewtopic.php?f=2&t=4228 - lost aircraft in Greenland

hamg
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Re: Airborne ground penetrating radar

Post by hamg »

I am designing an airborne GPR survey for a river bathymetry survey, we will be using 3 different systems from RADARTeam http://www.radarteam.se/ to test the data quality. GPR models that we will be using are:

Model SE-70 (80 Mhz) - expected Resolution 31 cm - expected Depth - >10 m
Model SE-150(124 Mhz) - expected Resolution 21 cm - expected Depth - > 10 m
Cobra CBD (Multi (200/400/800 MHz) - expected Resolution - 6 cm - expected Depth - ~10 m

My aim is to design survey parameters so that i can have a achieve these depths and even deeper if possible. any resource that would help me design the optimum parameters will be of great help. Also is it possible to go deeper with these sensors and still get a reasonable image of subsurface ?

ADobrovolskiy
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Re: Airborne ground penetrating radar

Post by ADobrovolskiy »

Hello,

we do airborne GPR tests and surveys every week past 2.5 years.

what you can get in reality:

SE-70 - penetration up to 10m, data sample - https://files.ugcs.com/s/FFdEWaka5PA82J2
SE-150 - penetration up to 6m, data samples - https://files.ugcs.com/s/PeKeXEDZzGwD6bC and https://files.ugcs.com/s/FaaexbYsdbCYJsQ

flight altitude should be as low as possible. Maximum for SE-70 is 3m, for SE-150 is 2m.

But please be aware about dead zones of these antennas. Because of it, you will not see the water surface in GPR data from recommended altitude, and also will not see the bottom on shallow parts of the survey. To calculate depth it will be very important to have the constant altitude of drone over water, you can use a drone with RTK capable to use RTK data for altitude control, or our terrain following system - https://industrial.ugcs.com/true-terrain-following

Cobra CBD - penetration to the water from the drone will be 0.25 - 0.5m only. It is according to our tests when distance between antenna and water surface was ~1m. This antenna is suitable for bathymetric surveys for the dept up to 2m when antenna is almost in contact with water (rubber boat etc).

If you wish to know more - welcome to our airborne GPR courses - https://industrial.ugcs.com/promo/gprtraining

99thpercentile
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Re: Airborne ground penetrating radar

Post by 99thpercentile »

Why do you want to do airborne GPR on a river? I have done tons of geophysical surveys from walking to towing, to real helicopters and planes and also from unmanned aerial systems (UAS). In my opinion towed surveys are the sweet spot for value. Waterborne surveys are just another variation on towed surveys. I see lots of people attempting to do UAS based surveys, primarily magnetometers but now also GPR where either a towed survey or an airborne survey from a real plane or helicopter are better values. On a river you can perform side scan sonar, sub-bottom profiling, marine seismic, GPR bathymetry, marine resistivity, gravity, magnetometry, spontaneous potential or others that I probably missed. All of these are much easier from a boat or a platform towed behind a boat that to use a UAS. Flying always adds complexity, so it needs to be justified.

That is my two cents.
Ryan E. North, PhD, RPG, GISP
Principal Geophysicist
ISC Geoscience
ryan.e.north@iscgeoscience.com

ADobrovolskiy
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Re: Airborne ground penetrating radar

Post by ADobrovolskiy »

The answer is speed and safety.

Please check this sample - https://files.ugcs.com/s/PeKeXEDZzGwD6bC
It was 2 flights 15-20 minutes each.

Another sample - past summer we did a magnetic survey with a drone - 50km of survey lines with altitude 3-6m AGL and 5-10m between survey lines in Greenland over very rough terrain. Magnetic survey was done in 4 days as I remember. It is absolutely impossible to do the same from the surface and from a manned helicopter also because of very high risk for low altitude flights over very rough terrain.

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