Bae, S.; Yu, J.; Lei, W.; Kim, J., and Park, C., 2019. Experiments on unmanned aerial vehicle survey for detection of micro beach features. In: Jung, H.-S.; Lee, S.; Ryu, J.-H., and Cui, T. (eds.), Advances in Remote Sensing and Geoscience Information Systems of Coastal Environments. Journal of Coastal Research, Special Issue No. 90, pp. 354-361. Coconut Creek (Florida), ISSN 0749-0208.
This study tested the effectiveness of using UAV point clouds at different densities to delineate micro beach features. A profile-based method was applied to three different types of geometric patterns of ripples: featureless, regular pattern, and irregular pattern. A terrestrial laser scanner (TLS) based profile was used as the baseline. In general, the overall RMSE between TLS-based profile and UAV-based profiles increased with UAV flight altitude. For the featureless test zone, the UAV beach profile matched the TLS profile with acceptable errors for all three test flight altitudes. In the irregular ripple area, UAV profiles showed much lower RMSE than the regular ripple area. Furthermore, in the irregular ripple area, the UAV profiles captured more extreme elevation points than in the regular ripple area. The results suggest that in beach areas with an irregular spatial pattern of features, UAV surveys could take higher flight altitudes to achieve the same level of accuracy as in an area with a regular pattern of features. This study proved that UAV-based elevation surveys could achieve high-level accuracy with controlled flight heights and could replace the costly TLS-based surveys.