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At the end of the lecture, the students should be able to: Define surveying as part of the science of Geomatics Identify the jobs of a surveyor Gain knowledge on the history of surveying Enumerate the surveying operations , its uses, types, and recent technologies Be familiar with the different surveying terms




the science concerned with the measurement, representation, analysis, management, retrieval and display of spatial information describing both the Earth's physical features and the built environment. includes disciplines such as:
Surveying Geodesy Remote Sensing & Photogrammetry Cartography Geographic Information Systems Global Positioning Systems
Source: Dept. of Surveying and Spatial Information Science, Univ. of Tasmania.


II. Surveying Definitions III. The Surveyor IV. History of Surveying V. Surveys uses, types, operations, recent

technologies VI. Definition of Terms


(Traditional Definition)

The art of making measurements of the relative positions of natural and man-made features on the earth's surface, and the presentation of this information either graphically or numerically. NJDOT Survey Manual, p.3

Source: Center for Advanced Spatial Technologies, University of Arkansas.


Surveying (Modern Definition)

The art and science of determining angular and linear measurements to establish the form, extent, and relative position of points, lines, and areas on or near the surface of the earth or on other extraterrestrial bodies through applied mathematics and the use of specialized equipment and techniques. J.P. La Putt (1987)

Professional Surveying
The application of knowledge of the: science of surveying measurement, legal principles of boundary location, laws related to boundaries & land use, applicable mathematical & computational theories and principles, natural & other forces which affect positional accuracy, land planning & development concepts pertinent to subdivision of land & property surveys, land record & land tenure concepts, geodetic & other earth-related sciences to the analysis, design, & execution of surveying & mapping projects & the design of land mapping & IS. --Buckner (1994)

The Surveyor
A surveyor is a professional person with the academic qualifications and technical expertise to:
practice the science of measurement; assemble and assess land and geographic related information; use that information for the purpose of planning and implementing the efficient administration of the land, the sea and structures thereon; and instigate the advancement and development of such practices.
--International Federation of Surveyors

Surveying throughout History

In Babylon

(4000 BC)

In Egypt

(the Great Pyramid of Khufu in Giza- 2780 BC)

Federation of American Scientists



BC-194 BC)

School of Surveying 150 BC

School of surveying was established by Romans to teach: town planning map making and building of roads and aqueducts

His measurements are with an error of less than 2%, but that was 2200 years ago!

120 BC

Ptolemy produced maps.

If the earth was spherical then a proper representation could be obtained by a geometrical projection of that surface

What can be mapped could be ruled.

ptolemy.eecs.berkeley.edu/ people/ptolemy.htm

History of Geomatics

1. Establishment of boundaries of land 2. Fixing of national and state boundaries 3. Charting of coastlines and navigable streams and lake 4. Precise location of definite reference points throughout the country 5. Collection of valuable facts concerning the earths magnetism at widely scattered stations throughout the country

Types of Surveys
1. Plane Surveying
the type of surveying in which the mean surface of the earth is considered a plane, or in which its spheroidal shape is neglected.

2. Geodetic Surveying
takes into account the true shape of the earth.

Davis, R.E., et. al. (1981)


On the earths surface:
18.5 km length of an arc 0.007m > subtended chord 196km2 area of triangle spherical excess is 1
Davis, R.E., et. al. (1981)

1. Control Survey consists of establishing the horizontal and vertical positions of arbitrary points 2. Property Survey performed to determine the length and direction of lot lines and to establish the position of these lines on the ground. 3. Topographic Survey made to secure data from which may be made a topographic map indicating the configuration of the terrain and the location of natural and humanmade objects. Davis, R.E., et. al. (1981)

True shape of the earth must be taken into consideration only in precise surveys of large extent!

4. Hydrographic survey refers to surveying of bodies of water for the purposes of navigation, water supply, or subaqueous construction.

Davis, R.E., et. al. (1981)

5. Mine Survey utilizes the principles for land, geologic and topographic surveying to control, locate and map underground and surface works related to mining operations.

6. Route survey refers to those control, topographic and construction surveys necessary for the location and construction of lines of transportation or communication, such as highways, railroads, canals, transmission lines and pipelines.

Davis, R.E., et. al. (1981)

Davis, R.E., et. al. (1981)


7. Construction Survey performed to lay out, locate and monitor public and private engineering works.

8. Photogrammetric Survey utilizes the principle of aerial and terrestrial photogrammetry, in which measurements made on photographs are used to determine the positions of photographed objects.

Davis, R.E., et. al. (1981)

Davis, R.E., et. al. (1981)

Total Station System Digital Photogrammetry Satellite Positioning System USA NAVSTAR GPS Russia GLONASS European Union - Galileo Geographic and Land Information Systems

www.mitrecaasd.org/ proj/satnav/

Handheld GPS


Definition of Terms
Level surface
a curved surface every element of which is normal to a plumb line

Definition of Terms
Horizontal plane


plane tangent to a level surface at a particular point

direction away from the center of the earth and above the observers head

Horizontal line
a line tangent to a level surface. In surveying, it is commonly understood that a horizontal line of sight is straight.

direction toward the center of the earth

Horizontal angle
an angle formed by the intersection of two lines in a horizontal plane. Davis, R.E., et. al. (1981)

Davis, R.E., et. al. (1981)

Definition of Terms
Vertical line


Definition of Terms
Zenith angle


a line perpendicular to the horizontal plane. a vertical line in the direction toward the center of the earth is said to be in the direction of the nadir.

angle between two lines in a vertical plane where it is understood that one of the lines is directed toward the zenith.

Vertical plane
is a plane in which a vertical line is an element

Nadir angle
angle between two lines in a vertical plane where it is understood that one of the lines is directed toward the nadir.

Vertical angle
angle between two intersecting lines in a vertical plane

Davis, R.E., et. al. (1981)

Davis, R.E., et. al. (1981)

Definition of Terms
Horizontal Distances


Definition of Terms
Difference in Elevation


distances measured along a level line. plumb line-to-plumb line distance.

Elevation of a point
vertical distance above (or below) some arbitrarily assumed level surface, or datum.

vertical distance between two points. distance between imaginary level surface containing high point and a similar surface containing the low point.

operation of measuring difference in elevation

an imaginary line of constant elevation on the ground surface. Contour line is the corresponding line on the map Davis, R.E., et. al. (1981)

Grade/Gradient of a line
slope of the line or rate of ascent or descent Davis, R.E., et. al. (1981)


Becker, B.J. Eratosthenes of Cyrene. http://www.mlahanas.de/Greeks/Eratosthenes.htm ptolemy.eecs.berkeley.edu/ people/ptolemy.htm Buckner (1994). http://surveying.mentabolism.org/buckner.html. Last Accessed 16June08 Center for Advanced Spatial Technologies, University of Arkansas. http://www.cast.uark.edu/home/research/geomatics.html Davis, R.E., et. al (1981). Surveying: Theory and Practice. USA: McGraw-Hill, Inc. Federation of American Scientists. Html link lost Great Pyramid of Khufu. http://vncafe.blogspot.com/2008/03/great-pyramidof-giza.html History of Geomatics. http://www.sli.unimelb.edu.au/planesurvey/prot/topic/topo02-01.html www.mitrecaasd.org/ proj/satnav/

Sources (continued)
International Federation of Surveyors. http://www.surveyor.asn.au/for-the-public/international-definition-ofsurveyor.php La Putt, J.P. (2007). Elementary Surveying. Philippines: National Book Store. ManSurveying.gif. From http://everythingaboutsurveying.blogspot.com/2008/05/geodeticinstrumentation-methods.html New Jersey Department of Transportation. Survey Manual. Downloaded from http://www.state.nj.us/transportation/eng/documents/survey/

http://surveying.mentabolism.org/geomatic.htm. From the Dept. of Surveying and Spatial Information Science, Univ. of Tasmania. Link (broken): http://info.utas.edu.au/docs/geomatics/geomatics_exp.html