HCSS: Purpose-Built Drone-Based Data Analytics

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JP Giometti, Executive Director, Global Strategy and Corporate Development
In retrospect, it is quite alluring how drones have come a long way since they were first used for aerial surveillance during the first World War. As drone technology impacts across various industries, drones are gaining traction in the construction arena too. The drone technology enables contractors, equipment managers, or project managers to monitor any emerging issue, track progress, and develop better plans on-site by providing an unparalleled view of a site in real time at a fraction of the cost.

Today, in the wake of the pandemic, construction personnel are scouting for easily implementable paperless solutions to collect the on-field data effectively. The need of the hour is to respond to the massive digital shift and train all the stakeholders with a faster time to value, which has unfolded a slew of challenges.

“Addressing these challenges, HCSS, as a trailblazer of innovation in the heavy civil industry, has added an exciting new product to its portfolio—HCSS Aerial, a drone-based data analytics platform to offer 3D mapping and analytics capabilities tailored to our heavy-civil customers,” states JP Giometti, Executive Director, Global Strategy and Corporate Development at HCSS. “We have a proven process with our easy-to-use software to go digital.”

HCSS has been making an indelible mark in the construction technology space since 1986 with its construction technology software that helps companies streamline their operations. There aren’t many companies that can boast the breadth of solutions that HCSS offers, including project management, quality assessment solutions, cloud services, and telematics.

“With HCSS Aerial, surveyors and contractors can quickly collect aerial survey data, create high-quality 3D models, and gain access to data visualization and measurement tools across the project lifecycle, helping them to make better decisions,” says Giometti. HCSS Aerial, designed to work with the latest generation of drones for professional applications, transforms large numbers of images into accurate point clouds, DSMs, and orthomosaics. With HCSS Aerial, customers can easily track execution progress over time and generate site documentation and reports in 24 hours, not weeks.

The latest version of HCSS Aerial has additional features to make job site mapping and data visualization more accessible and useful.


HCSS, has added an exciting new product to its portfolio--HCSS Aerial, a drone-based data analytics platform to offer 3D mapping and analytics capabilities tailored to our heavy-civil customers


In the upgraded version, enhanced Accuracy Report and Checkpoints Support validate the model accuracy without the need for expensive hardware, providing detailed information listing checkpoints’ and the general construction plan’s information, residuals, and errors. The new version offers local coordinate system support for geo-referencing and seamless workflow integration, along with terrain filtering capabilities that provide more accurate volumetric measurements. Image validation capability is another new feature that verifies the integrity of images selected for uploading.

In an implementation highlight, one of its customers, Kyson Spendlove, who is a UAV Pilot at Interstate Rock Products, a General Engineering Contractor headquartered in Utah, has loaded ten sites in HCSS Aerial and uses the platform for stockpile calculations, survey-grade topographic maps and to ascertain project progress. As opposed to sending an army of people and surveyors to gain multifaceted information from multiple sites, deploying drones to capture important data is accurate and saves time. “I do not feel other drone processing programs are as focused on the civil construction field as HCSS Aerial. I am very impressed with the way that HCSS Aerial is heading and the changes that have been made,” says Kyson.

Before the end of the year, HCSS plans to add a range of functionalities to the HCSS Aerial platform, including integration with other HCSS products and a flight planning drone app that will enable automated data capture from the construction site. “Furthermore, leveraging artificial intelligence and machine learning, HCSS Aerial will automatically identify defined and structured elements and objects and measure and quantify them for tracking, analysis, and comparison to design,” concludes Giometti.

HCSS News

HCSS Launches a New Version of HCSS Aerial

Trusted leader for construction software solutions, HCSS adds new features to HCSS Aerial, a drone-based data analytics platform

HOUSTON -
A new version of HCSS Aerial, a cloud-based solution for continuous monitoring of infrastructure construction projects, has launched. This version adds additional features to make job site mapping and data visualization easier and more effective.

HCSS Aerial users in the heavy civil industry already benefit from the ease of use and survey-grade accuracy levels of drone-based surveys. HCSS Aerial provides accuracy of 1/10ft (3cm) from independent checkpoints across small and large survey areas.

The software works with the latest generation of drones for professional applications, and transforms large numbers of images into accurate point clouds, DSMs and orthomosaics.

HCSS Aerial customers use the platform to track execution progress with the ability to compare “digital twin” models of the job site from different dates and against the design. Site documentation and reports are generated in 24 hours, not weeks.

Customers use volumetric calculations and analysis as progress indicators of projects and track earthwork quantities more accurately to avoid mistakes like underestimating or overestimating material and cut vs. fill.

"I've had the opportunity to work with a couple of different drone programs. While these drone processing programs are very high quality and have had years to be perfected, I do not feel they are as focused on the civil construction field as HCSS Aerial. I am very impressed with the way HCSS Aerial is heading,” said Kyson Spendlove, UAV Pilot at Interstate Rock Products.

One new feature is Enhanced Accuracy Report and Checkpoints Support, which validates model accuracy without the need for expensive hardware, providing detailed information listing checkpoints’ and GCPs’ information, residuals, and errors.

This version also offers Local Coordinate System Support for geo-referencing and seamless workflow integration, and Terrain Filtering capabilities for more accurate volumetric measurements. Also added was Image Validation to check integrity of images selected for uploading and look for gaps. Issues are shown as warnings with the option to ignore or fix as needed.

"It's very exciting to add HCSS Aerial to our portfolio and offer 3D mapping and analytics capabilities tailored to our heavy-civil customers," said JP Giometti, HCSS Executive Director, Global Strategy and Corporate Development. "With HCSS Aerial, surveyors and contractors can quickly collect aerial survey data, create high-quality 3D models, and access data visualization and measurement tools across the project lifecycle, helping them make better decisions."

HCSS has announced plans for more features in 2020, including integration among HCSS products; a flight planning drone app enabling automated data capture from the construction site; and automatic Identification of Elements & Objects using AI and machine learning to identify manholes, utility poles, railways, etc., and quantify them for tracking, analysis, and design comparison.

Company
HCSS

Headquarters
Sugar Land, Texas

Management
JP Giometti, Executive Director, Global Strategy and Corporate Development

Description
HCSS has been making an indelible mark in the construction technology space since 1986 with its construction technology software that helps companies streamline their operations. There aren’t many companies that can boast the breadth of solutions that HCSS offers, including project management, quality assessment solutions, cloud services, and telematics. The latest version of HCSS Aerial, a drone based data analytics platform, now has additional features to make job site mapping and data visualization more accessible and useful. With HCSS Aerial, customers can easily track execution progress over time and generate site documentation and reports in 24 hours, not weeks

HCSS