During the past dozen years, several mobile mapping systems based on the use of imaging and positioning sensors mounted on terrestrial (and aerial) vehicles have been developed. Recently, systems characterized by an increased portability have been proposed in order to enable mobile mapping in environments that are difficult to access for vehicles, in particular for indoor environments. In this work the performance of a low-cost mobile mapping system is compared with that of: (i) a state-of-the-art terrestrial laser scanning (TLS), considered as the control; (ii) a mobile mapping backpack system (Leica Pegasus), which can be considered as the state-of-the-art of commercial mobile mapping backpack systems. The aim of this paper is two-fold: first, assessing the reconstruction accuracy of the proposed low-cost mobile mapping system, based on photogrammetry and ultra-wide band (UWB) for relative positioning (and a GNSS receiver if georeferencing is needed), with respect to a TLS survey in an indoor environment, where the global navigation satellite system (GNSS) signal is not available; second, comparing such performance with that obtained with the Leica backpack. Both mobile mapping systems are designed to work without any control point, to enable an easy and quick survey (e.g., few minutes) and to be easily portable (relatively low weight and small size). The case study deals with the 3D reconstruction of a medieval bastion in Padua, Italy. Reconstruction using the Leica Pegasus backpack allowed obtaining a smaller absolute error with respect to the UWB-based photogrammetric system. In georeferenced coordinates, the root mean square (RMS) error was respectively 16.1 cm and 50.3 cm; relative error in local coordinates was more similar, respectively 8.2 cm and 6.1 cm. Given the much lower cost (approximately $6k), the proposed photogrammetric-based system can be an interesting alternative when decimetric reconstruction accuracy in georeferenced coordinates is sufficient.
This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License
which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited