Geotechnical characterization of rock faces using photogrammetry

Dr Dwayne Tannant


Photogrammetry-based techniques that use photographs of a rock face offer a fast and inexpensive way to obtain data needed for geotechnical characterization. These techniques also reduce fieldwork safety risks associated with conventional structural mapping methods. A camera can function as an accurate survey tool, in many cases as accurate as conventional laser-based survey equipment. Millions of 3D coordinates can be determined from only a few photographs. Key challenges for this technique are the presence of vegetation and taking photos from optional locations. The presentation will provide an overview of my experience (successes and limitations) with photogrammetry via a number of case histories from mines in Canada. It will also look to the future with the use of drones and structure-from-motion processing of the images.

About Dr Tannant Dwayne Tannan

Dr Tannant is a Professor in the School of Engineering at the University of British Columbia. Prior to joining UBC in 2008, he was a mining professor at the University of Alberta for 10 years and worked for 10 years as a senior research engineer at the Geomechanics Research Centre in Sudbury. Dr. Tannant has a B.A.Sc. in geological engineering from UBC and a Ph.D. in civil (geotechnical) engineering from the University of Alberta. He is a Fellow of the Canadian Institute of Mining, Metallurgy and Petroleum. Dr. Tannant’s research and consulting interests include geohazard assessment, rock support for surface and underground excavations, and rockfall mitigation. His research methodologies include fieldwork and numerical modelling. Dr. Tannant has expertise in the use of photogrammetry techniques to safely and rapidly acquire field data.

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