Aerial imagery company turns to Inertial Sense INS/GNSS navigation systems when looking to get accurate orientation information that helps them implement better automated data processing algorithms, requiring less human intervention.

To conduct an aerial survey, it is critical to obtain an accurate position estimate of the camera target. The Inertial Sense module is ideal for the camera and sensor orientation and geo-pointing.

Thanks to this photogrammetry application of the Inertial Sense module, our customers are able to collect accurate geomatics or other imagery in their aerial surveys.

About Customer: Ceres Imaging

Ceres Imaging is an aerial imaging company that helps agriculturalists optimize their water and fertilizer application. Ceres takes multi-spectral aerial imagery of agriculture, processes it, then provides it to farmers as a service.  This allows farmers to make timely farm management decisions at a very detailed level in order to save money on inputs, as well as spot problems with infrastructure. In order to collect the imagery, Ceres builds their own camera systems and fly them on small single-engine airplanes between 1,000 and 10,000 ft. above the fields. 

Challenge: Choosing INS/GNSS to integrate into a high-performing aerial imagery sensor camera

It is essential for Ceres Imaging to know exactly where each image is taken, so each image can be properly appended.  In addition, Ceres also needed to know the orientation of the camera, with respect to the ground, since the plane is moving in many directions and experiencing different levels of turbulence.

Without INS/GNSS data for Ceres imagery, automation would be significantly more difficult.  The orientation information provided by the µINS from Inertial Sense allows Ceres Imaging to better implement automated data processing algorithms, requiring less human intervention.

Ceres aerial platform is expected to function in a harsh environment where there is a lot of vibration, these conditions are a big problem for most Inertial Navigation Systems.

These are many of the challenges that Inertial Sense helps Ceres Imaging overcome.

Solution: Ceres Imaging selects Inertial Sense OEM INS module as their solution for aerial surveying and imagery

Aerial imagery for agriculture companies, such as Ceres, turn to Inertial Sense when looking to improve GPS reading. Inertial Sense helps to append each image perfectly and provides the exact orientation of the moving camera with respect to the ground.

We considered a lot of different GPS/IMU devices ranging from consumer-level $20 devices to higher end $2,000 devices.

Developer from Ceres

To start the development and integration, Ceres selected INS development kit. The INS fuses all sensor data in EKF and outputs attitude and position estimates. Upon the completion of the development and test flights, Ceres integrated our OEM solution which has a very small footprint, is low cost and maintains a tight accuracy.

Inertial Sense offers µIMU, µAHRS, µINS, or dual antenna µINS products that provide all the performance of the more expensive units at a much lower price point. INS is used in a variety of applications including UAV navigation, automated vehicles, payload orientation, robotics, personnel tracking, and much more.

Results: Ceres Imaging is able to process a flight and quickly relay image results to farmers

With Inertial Sense calibrated, micro inertial navigation systems with sensor fusion onboard, Ceres can obtain accurate position and orientation information of a camera with respect to the ground. Also because of the harsh conditions Ceres overcomes using the µINS from Inertial Sense, it is safe to say that Inertial Sense provides all the performance of the more expensive units at a much more reasonable price point.

With better automation and a dedicated Inertial Sense support team, Ceres saves a lot of time, allowing them to process a flight and quickly relay image results to farmers.  Ceres then gives the customers the information they need to respond to changes in their fields, helping them achieve higher quantity and quality of harvested goods.

The Inertial Sense INS/GNSS solution provides fantastic performance in harsh environments at a much lower price than competitors; for us, it’s a no brainer.

Ceres Imaging

Inertial Sense is the premier provider of robust micro inertial navigation solutions for autonomous application manufacturers with the commitment to our customers’ success. Inertial Sense accelerates time-to-market for manufacturers and unlocks new categories of high-volume robotic and autonomous applications. See how you can accelerate your new product introduction to the market.