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NEC 2104 Engineering Surveying : Global Position System

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Survey and Civil software and the uses of data recording and processing to produce digital terrain models and its potential to interface yeah Computer Aided Drafting
The use of GNSS and the attainable tolerances to guide machinery and or set out grids in construction
Robotic total stations and their use in design and construction
Civil construction processes and asset recording related to large scale subdivisions ,
Road profiling using laser scanning Any other topic relating to engineering surveying (subject to the Lecturers approval) 


The commencement of GNSS brought with it pros and cons globally in economic, physical, social and other daily human endeavors. There are a number of GNSS systems that have been established by the super powers the Global Position System “GPS” in America, Global Navigation Of Satellite System “GLNOSS” of Russia, Galileo of Europe, COMPASS of China. GNSS is an abbreviate of global navigation satellite systems which is a software incorporation of satellites used to geographically locate receivers on carriers on land, sea or air. These locations come about through various mathematical calculations of distance, time, speed and velocities. Here we are going to discuss how GNSS has impacted the construction and machinery industries

In every construction works the study of the environment and directional coordinates are first set to determine the nature of construction and preparations to be done and also the kind of machinery and control operations to be used (Gleason and Gebre 2009).Grids are usually placed on sites and communicate information via rovers that are placed on clear grounds to avoid errors in measurements. Usually, rovers do not work alone they go hand in hand with initialisation that performs the duty of correcting detected errors on sites by improving accuracy in centimeter levels (McNab 2011). These accuracies are also determined by the kind of projects being done for example for larger works higher accuracy is needed. The GNSS technique has helped to bring efficient and precise data collection and operation works. Previously, slow surveys were done with physical instruments consequently leading to reluctant followed activities which have been brought to a close.

According to Darling 2011, the system has helped in timely delivery of works. This has been made possible through reliable and efficient data surveys and information of site operations. However, construction companies have made an effort of investing in GNSS machines that have worked in their favor by completing and delivering quality and cost efficient projects on time (Gleason and Gebre 2009).Never the less, not only has GNSS machines and services helped in building firms portfolio but also aided in developing a country’s infrastructure. Previously, only small sizeable deals were attainable and gradually huge enterprises have become a reality generating even greater profits for the companies (Darling 2011). Running and supervising of large building projects was cumbersome in all aspects, the adoption of GNSS has improved designing, equipment’s maintenance and construction.

The reinforced use of GNSS machinery has improved competency and reliability in construction by cutting on expenditures in labor, material acquisition and surveys (Uren 2010). This has significantly benefited not only the construction sector but also the economy as well. Further profits are expected by embracing technological innovations and operational systems and softwares.The use of machines has improved safety and reduced risks through monitoring and coordinating machines location works (Price 2010). These machines can only operate one at a time and thus equipment to equipment or worker collision is avoided. Man power has also reduced since companies are adopting the use of machines that a fast, reliable and efficient but positively enhanced man’s health and prolonged life span. Building materials have also been minimized by acquiring and using of right materials thus reduced wastage, (this is where construction supervisors take the advantage).

According to Uren and Price 2010, GNSS has also helped in equipment maintenance, service distribution and performance. Machines are supplied according to the environments terrain (standardizing on wear and tear), infrastructure (solar, electricity, battery or fuel powered), time schedule and so forth. Locating of machines has been made easier by the use of gps devices that transmits data from the machine, phones, satellites and other electronics so long as they have monitoring chips which all machines do have nowadays (Garcia $ McNab 2011). These devices and soft wares have made locating of machines either performing on ground level or underground level duties. The use of these machines has improved in asset management, cost reduction, time saving and also information sharing (texts, phone calls and mail).

Automation has also brought the realization of advanced learning of machine operations as familiarity with machines is what will help secure ones job. As discouraging as it sounds with the fast gradual advancements of technology it will soon bring with it the loss of man power completely (Darling 2011).The increased use of GNSS in technology, overpowering on satellites will be experienced through weak signal strengths. Internet and signal strengths have to also be improved to help and support monitoring and operations that require internet sourcing to perform (Garcia $ McNab 2011). Satellites also have to improve their accuracy levels and deliver precise corrections and machine guidance in operations. Sooner or later even small operating companies will be adopting the use of technology.

  With this they aim at improving production, cutting down on costs, providing business and employee safety through security programs and as well induce confidence to the growing market competition and diverting profits into the business (Uren $ Price 2010). It will be selfish if 3D resolution is not given credit generated from GNSS advancements.3D is an art that has been put into use in construction designs, gaming’s, visual and physical art and in other fields.3D with the help of GNSS has made the impossible possible by revolutionizing man’s perspective of seeing things(Darling 2011). Art has also grown from an inborn talent to a teachable one and from motionless to motion pictures. Machines have also been created to perform complex art works that would be time consuming, expensive to produce and tiring to fast, more perfect, easy and cost efficient. Heavy equipment’s like bulldozers and excavators have also been fitted with these 3D systems to provide guidance during work.

To conclude the use of GNSS varies depending on level of technology and infrastructure for we cannot compare super powers to third world countries. The global navigation satellite system has variegated uses like in military use which was its initial core purpose. It was to reduce the number of dying soldiers in the line of duty through accurate targeting of weapons, locating hiding grounds of rivals and also denying navigation to areas they please. As much as GNSS can work to our advantage, it can as well be a tool for destruction.


McNab, K.L. and Garcia-Vasquez, M. (2011). Autonomous and remote operation technologies in Australian mining. The University of Queensland. Brisbane.

 Gleason, S., & Gebre, D. (2009). GNSS applications and methods. Boston, Mass, Artech House.

Uren, J., & Price, W. F. (2010). Surveying for Engineers. Basingstoke, Palgrave Macmillan.

Darling, P. (2011). SME Mining Engineering Handbook. Littleton, SME.

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