Airborne

Remote Sensing

Bathymetric and topographic LiDAR

(532, 1064, 1550nm)

VNIR/SWIR hyperspectral

(400-2500nm)

Hi-res spectral

Thermal IR

Microwave

(active, passive, InSAR, L-,P-,Ka, Ku)

 

Photography

Video

... probing the environment using the least intrusive and
 
         cost-efficient state-of-the-art airborne technologies ...
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AIRBORNE

In-Situ

Meteorological

(wind, turbulence, air temperature, humidity,

eddy fluxes, ...)

Particles

(fine, ultra-fine,

sampling, ..)

Trace Gases

(CO2, CH4, NH3, ...)

 

Aerosols

Multi-platform

UAV-sensors

Third Party Sensors 

Unrestricted research flight operations Australia-wide - day and night - over land and water - 25m to 7km altitude

Not-for-Profit Independent Approved Research Institute
SOME RECENT HIGHLIGHTS
 

"Removing" the rainforest on Cape York

reveals a landscape of hills and creeks

that no human eye has ever seen.

 

Using our high-resolution airborne Lidar,

we were able to find out what's hidden under the very dense canopy of the rainforest.

See the whole landscape with the "Trees/noTrees" sliders:

then

Read more about the project here...

Joint study by ARA-Airborne Research Australia and the IRRS - Iron Range Research Station.

       Nothing but trees....             ....nesting mounds                          Nothing but trees...          ....old diggings from

            (aerial photo)                              of scrub fowls                                (aerial photo)                         a mini-goldrush                                                               invisible below.                                                                        invisible below.

Ultrafine Particles and Coal-Fired Power Stations

A decade of airborne regional-scale measurements of aerosol size distributions

and meteorological parameters allows to identify major sources.

UFP influence rainfall distribution via aerosol-cloud interaction.

Joint study by ARA/Flinders University and the Karlsruhe Institute of Technology (KIT).

Inner Mongolia, China

Europe

Eastern Australia

 
Mangrove Dieback along the coast of the Gulf of Carpentaria

In Aug/Sep 2017, we mapped the mangrove dieback

that is currently occurring in many areas

along the coastline of the Gulf of Carpentaria

in Far North Queensland and the Northern Territory

Sensors used:                   Riegl Q680i-S LiDAR

                                         Canon DSLR EOS 5D MkII

                                     modified Canon DSLR EOS 6D (for ndvi)

Roper River, NT

Use the slider to see the mangroves before and after the dieback

Google Earth image 2005
Airborne Photomosaic Aug 2017

healthy 

dead 

hi-res airborne LiDAR

10m wide

cross-section 

1m wide

cross-section 

hi-res airborne LiDAR

The data from the example above can be downloaded from these links:

Google Earth kmz-files

GeoTIFF- & laz-files

The team

More than 6,000km of flightlines were mapped over 3 weeks yielding >3,000sqkm of covered area.

The project and data capture is described in detail in this document:

 

ARA_Lidar_Mangroves2017

The document also contains links to the full data set.

All data are freely available for download.

A collaborative project with funding from: Charles-Darwin University, TropWater/JCU, Queensland Herbarium and ARA; supported by R. Lucas, U of Wales Aberystwyth, UK and Riegl Lasermesstechnik, Austria.

All data will also become available on the TERN/AusCover portal.

 
LiDAR bathymetry of Ningaloo Reef, NW-Western Australia

We recently flew our topographic and bathymetric Lidars over Ningaloo Reef. We were very fortunate with the weather and water conditions, so we were able to "see" into the water all the way down to more than 13m depth.

The topographic Lidar (a Riegl Q680i-S) was mapping the water surface, giving us an image of the waves crashing into the reef edge, while the bathymetric Lidar (a Riegl VQ820G) gave us a very detailed image of the reef structure below.

Use the slider to uncover the underwater reef structure !

Results from a collaborative study with Ryan Lowe and Jeff Hansen, Univerity of Western Australia 

If you would like to see how this area looks from the cockpit of the research aircraft, go to our Facebook page www.facebook.com/AirborneResearchAustralia .

 

LiDAR 3D-Visualisation

 

We just started to use the potree software to visualise some of our LiDAR data.

Two examples are already available:

Rendered by TERN/AusCover

using data collected by ARA

Rendered by ARA

using data collected by ARA

 

WHAT WE DO

Combining the most modern in-situ and remote sensing technology with the most flexible, affordable and versatile aerial platforms, we carry out our own research and make our toolkit available to the Australian and international science and R&D community.

 

Our approach utilises the best features of both worlds of research aviation,

- the flexibility of UAV-like technology and instrumentation, and

- the versatility and unrestricted operations of small, modern manned aircraft,

giving us the capability to cost-efficiently and rapidly integrate sensors into our airborne platforms and deploy them anywhere in Australia (and even overseas).

WHO WE ARE

We are an independent certified Not-For-Profit Approved Research Institute (ARI) with strong links into the science networks nationally and internationally.

 

We have a long-standing solid track record of involvement and leadership in a large number of Australian and international science-based projects where the use of airborne technologies were essential. 

HOW WE OPERATE

or

SHARING IS THE KEY

Most of our work is done in collaboration or partnerships with Universities, public entities or Industry.

 

As an ARI, our policy will continue to keep our work as transparent and traceable as possible manifested through the use of open source software, open and free discussions with collaborators and other specialists in the field about methodologies and procedures, and by making the data collected during science-based projects available to the relevant communities through open data repositories and archives - whenever possible and controlled by appropriate procedures.

 

We have a policy of sharing our airborne technology, data and expertise - in particular with students, scientists and small groups and businesses such as ours.

 

To facilitate airborne data capture and/or trials in the context of student projects, small scientific projects and projects in collaboration with other Not-For-Profit entities, we maintain a register of desired locations and types of data on the basis of which we may then propose to combine them to make them feasible.

As our aircraft are based on advanced gliding technology, they have the capability to glide for long distances in the event of an engine failure allowing us to operate safely far out over water and over unlandable areas.

 

Our airborne systems do not require any airport infrastructure for their operation which makes deployment very flexible.

 

As we operate two nearly identical airborne platforms, there is the ability to fly a large number of sensors in tandem, or if required, identical sensors simultaneously at different altitudes.

The environmental impact of our research platforms in terms of

 

- carbon dioxide footprint

- exhaust pollution

-noise pollution

- visual impact

 

is far smaller than that of any other airborne research platform in operation today.

 

This has enabled us to operate over the most environmentally sensitive areas, such as flying at low altitudes over the protected coral reefs of the Great Barrier Reef or in the wilderness areas of Southern Tasmania.

ENVIRONMENTAL FOOTPRINT

SPECIAL FEATURES

SENSORS & SENSOR SUITES

airborne and ground-based

HYPERSPECTRAL & SPECTRAL

 

Hyper-spectral scanner SPECIM EAGLE II

(optimised ARA version, VNIR 400-1000nm, up to 488 bands, 1024 pixels/line)

 

Hyper-spectral scanner SPECIM HAWK

(optimised ARA version, SWIR 970-2500nm, up to 254 bands, 320 pixels/line)

 

Tri-spectral imager MosaicMill CANON 6D

(red, green, nir - mainly for ndvi - 21 MPix)

 

Tri-spectral scanner ARA/AWI TSLS

(red, green, nir - mainly for ndvi - 2048 cross-track pixels, 50lps)

 

Single Band line scanner RUNNER

( single band btw 390 and 1050nm - 2048 cross-track pixels, >1KH lps )

 

MICROWAVE

 

Passive microwave L-Band radiometry

(for soil moisture, sea surface / river salinity)

 

Passive microwave P-, Ka- Ku-Band radiometry

(for soil moisture, sea surface / river salinity)

 

Active L-Band microwave SAR, InSAR

(for high-res soil moisture, salinity, vegetation)

ATMOSPHERIC PARAMETERS

 

METpod, BATprobe and Z-Probe

(Air Temperature, Humidity, 3D-wind vector, Air Pressure)

 

AIRBORNE EDDY-CORRELATION (FLUXES)

(for airborne flux measurements of heat, water vapour and CO2)

 

TRACE GASES, PARTICLES, AEROSOL

 

Meteorological trace gas, particle and aerosol sensors

 

Quantum-cascade laser gas analysers

(for methane, ammonia, nitrous oxide in ppb-range)

 

OTHER

 

Other more specialised instrumentation

(radon sampler, trace gas sampler, etc]

LiDAR

 

 

Full waveform scanning LiDAR RIEGL Q560

(up to 240kHz pulse rate, operating at 1550nm)

 

Full waveform scanning LiDAR RIEGL Q680i-S

(up to 400kHz pulse rate, operating at 1064nm)

 

Bathymetric scanning LiDAR RIEGL VQ820G

(operating at 532nm)

THERMAL INFRARED

 

Thermal Infrared imager

(FLIR A615 & S60)

 

 

STILL & VIDEO

 

Hi-res still and video cameras

(Canon 1D, 5D; GoPro, other)

AIRCRAFT PARAMETERS & INFRASTRUCTURE

 

Several high-precision IMU/GPS systems

Novatel SPAN with LITEF LCI, Novatel SPAN with LITEF ISA
tactical-grade; 

3 x OXTS RT4003 L1/L2/dual antenna MEMS-based
(3D-position and inertial speed;
attitude angles, accelerations, rates)

 

Laser Altimeter

(Riegl LD90LR)

 

BATprobe and Z-Probe

(Air Angles, dynamic pressure)

 

Comprehensive on-board infrastructure

(PCs, Ethernet/wireless throughout, Internet connection,
flight tracker, external science power - uninterrupted
switching from ground- to aircraft power, etc.)

GROUND-BASED

 

GPS Basestation

 

Spectrometer ASD

 

10m high mobile Flux Tower

 
 

WHO WE ARE

Airborne Research Australia

ABN 60 604 313 484

CONTACT US

OUR MAIN SPONSORS

Hackett Foundation Adelaide

Australian Research Council

Sir Ross and Sir Keith Smith Fund

Joyce and Don Schultz

Flinders University

For information:

info@airborneresearch.org.au

Director:      Andrew J. McGrath

Chief Scientist:   Jorg M. Hacker

LINKS  & THINGS

ARA is a member of:

   EUFAR

European Facility for

Airborne Research

 

  NAERS

Network of Airborne Environmental Research Scientists

  
... probing the environment using the least intrusive
                         and most cost-efficient technologies ...
  

© 2019 ARA

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