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flight planning for the USDA NRI program

Customizing Flight Planning to Optimize Collection Efficiency

This year Surdex was awarded a contract for the USDA’s National Resource Inventory (NRI) program, which includes “spot shot” collection of many small sites, typically 160 acres each, across the country. Since this is a departure from our usual model of large area acquisition, Surdex wanted to customize our flight planning process to more efficiently acquire the numerous, dispersed sites within our assigned states. Our Research & Development and Flight departments have successfully designed and implemented a unique flight planning process for these projects that includes multi-frame acquisition, collection of two to four sites per flight line, and adjusted flight line orientation. The new approach focuses on orienting flight lines for optimal collection efficiency rather than emphasizing a north-south acquisition approach. This planning strategy ensures the critical acquisition phase remains on schedule.