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Emerging Trends in Simactive

by Tejaswi Bhardwaj

SimActive is the pioneer of the new mapping era offering cutting-edge photogrammetry software since 2003. The company provides remote sensing applications on the data collected from satellite, aerial and drone imagery thus developing one server interface from any of the sensor. The company introduced the GPU-powered AT(Aerial Triangulation) and DSM (Digital Surface Model) generation engines in the industry. The advance features has additional tools for DEM Contour Extraction, Point Cloud Colorization, GCP Extraction, Volume Calculation, 3D Change Detection and NDVI map creation.

The Simactive offers drone mapping from any UAV platform for surveying and has the capability to collect and process infrared & multispectral imagery obtained from any camera and sensors. The software suit offers processing of thousands of images at unparalleled speed and quality on satellite images from a number of satellites such as GeoEye, Worldview, Ikonos, Spot, Radarsat-2, Kompsat and Pléiades.

                                            Editing Tools in SimActive Software

Today, thousands of customers in over 100 countries use SimActive's software. This includes government entities like the United States Army Corps of Engineers, and Fortune Global 500 companies like BHP Billiton and SNCF. The software has been used by a number of authorities and organizations over 100 countries worldwide. They include Delft University Technology, Netherlands; National Gendarmerie, France; South Korea Agency for Defence Development; The Department of Natural Resources and Wildlife, State of Michigan; The Department of Resource Surveys and Remote Sensing (DRSRS), Kenya and many more.

SimActive UAV generating DSM and point clouds to create mosaics of the imagery

Simactive also introduced an automated solution for direct georeferencing from real time kinematic positioning (RTK). The typical method of georeferencing includes a large number of ground control points (GCPs) to be collected within the study area which requires a considerable time.The RTK positioning  is a differential GNSS technique which provides high positioning performance in the vicinity of a base station and covering an area of distance about 10 to 20 Km. With the automated workflow offered by RTK positioning, the users can get high accuracy in projects without the use of collecting ground control points (GCPS).Martin Instrument, a reseller of SimActive and surveying equipment, is one of the many users benefitting from the automation. “Direct georeferencing greatly helps reducing cost for applications like corridor mapping,” said Mike Minick, VP Sales at Martin Instrument.

The company introduced a new 3D software known as Correlator 3D in 2008 for large-format  aerial sensors. Simactive is the developer of Correlator 3D software, a patent end-to-end photogrammetry solution for the generation of high quality geospatial data from satellite and aerial imagery, including UAVs.

                                Key Functionalities of SimActive Correlator3D



Aerial Triangulation is one of the important applications of Correlator3D which determines the camera position, orientations and caliberates the sensor, when required. 


The launch and advancements in the Simactive software Correlator3D served widespread applications in agriculture, emergency response, surveying and environmental monitoring. The software is primarily used for performing watershed analysis on collected database of aerial images.The ability to quickly and easily generate digital surface models (DSM) will allow the Department of Agriculture to significantly reduce costs of watershed analysis compared to traditional survey methods or LiDAR data. The Simactive Correlator3D is also used in mining application by the Directorate of Resource Surveys & Remote Sensing (DRSRS) for extensive mapping of mining activities. The software generated orthomosaics, contour lines, and digital terrain models of fluorspar mines in the Kerio valley in Kenya in order to provide spatial information and process hundreds of settlement images which advised the Government of Kenya on compensation plans.

Sample Project in Correlator 3D

SimActive software Correlator3D is also widely used in forestry applications to perform aerial triangulation for seamless orthomosaic production using medium format digital cameras. The software also assisted in the assessment of coastal erosion by implementing photogrammetry solutions in river shore line erosion, mangrove habitats and geospatial solutions. Correlator3D UAV offers high processing speed, resulting in a quick turnaround for projects of any size. Moreover, the software is scalable and offers a level of robustness uncommon to the UAV mapping world. Specialized knowledge is not required for software operation.

SATPALDA is a privately owned company and a leading provider of satellite imagery and GeoSpatial services to the user community. Established in 2002, SATPALDA has successfully completed wide range of photogrammetric and Remote Sensing Projects.

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