Q: What is ASPRS and why are the Specifications for Orthoimagery important to the industry?
A: The American Society of Photogrammetry and Remote Sensing (ASPRS) is a nationwide, professional association that has been around for over 80 years. The organization creates guidelines and specifications for aerial mapping, which most (if not all) statewide, countywide and municipal GIS projects use as base of their contracting scope of work.
GIS mapping is mostly based on photogrammetric mapping and orthophotos, most of them collected using the ASPRS standards and accuracy recommendations. Before 2014, the positional accuracy standards for mapping were based on the ASPRS Accuracy Standards for Large-Scale Maps of 1990, and with the advancements of digital technologies, there was an opportunity for the specifications to be reviewed and updated. More importantly, it’s imperative that industry specifications remain consistent because Surveyors and Engineers rely on accuracy standards to perform their work.
Q: Expand on the redefined guidelines of ASPRS; how to they support geospatial-related products?
A: The 2014 ASPRS Specifications are the most current standard to validate the quality and accuracy of orthoimagery mosaics deliverables produced today. The 1990 ASPRS Standards were based on film cameras and optics and analogic instruments that are considered dated and no longer used anywhere in the United States. With digital technology leading the way, mapping-related assignments are now conducted with digital cameras and sensors. These advancements in mapping technologies allow better quality and higher accuracy geospatial products. For these reasons, existing accuracy measures based on map scale, film scale, GSD, c-factor and scanning resolution no longer apply to current geospatial mapping practices, and the updated standards serve as a modernized tool to equip industry professionals with a model that is current with developing technology.
Q: How does your expertise help educate professionals in the industry?
A: With over 30 years of experience, I have managed and performed hundreds of photogrammetric mapping projects following the ASPRS guidelines. I have also been a member of the ASPRS since 1998, and I am part of the Technical Committee for the North Carolina (NC) ASPRS Chapter. My contribution to the organization includes a responsibility to inform professionals of new technical specifications and developments regarding the system, and I leverage this experience to help educate other industry professionals.
Be sure to stop in at the 2019 Spring Symposium “Remote Sensing 101” on May 17 at 3PM in Greenville, NC. to hear Mr. Cortes shine light on ASPRS Positional Accuracy Standards for Digital Geospatial Data. Learn more about the event.