The surveying and 3D modelling of objects that extend both below and above the water level, such as ships, harbour structures, offshore platforms, are still an open issue. Commonly, a combined and simultaneous survey is the adopted solution, with acoustic/optical sensors respectively in underwater and in air (most common) or optical/optical sensors both below and above the water level. In both cases, the system must be calibrated and a ship is to be used and properly equipped with also a navigation system for the alignment of sequential 3D point clouds. Such a system is usually highly expensive and has been proved to work with still structures. On the other hand for free floating objects it does not provide a very practical solution. In this contribution, a flexible, low-cost alternative for surveying floating objects is presented. The method is essentially based on photogrammetry, employed for surveying and modelling both the emerged and submerged parts of the object. Special targets, named Orientation Devices, are specifically designed and adopted for the successive alignment of the two photogrammetric models (underwater and in air). A typical scenario where the proposed procedure can be particularly suitable and effective is the case of a ship after an accident whose damaged part is underwater and necessitate to be measured (Figure 1). The details of the mathematical procedure are provided in the paper, together with a critical explanation of the results obtained from the adoption of the method for the survey of a small pleasure boat in floating condition.
Joint alignment of underwater and above-the-water photogrammtric 3D models by independent models adjustment / Menna, Fabio; Nocerino, Erica; Troisi, S.; Remondino, Fabio. - XL:5/W5(2015), pp. 143-151. (Intervento presentato al convegno Underwater 3D Recording and Modeling tenutosi a Piano di Sorrento, Italy nel 16–17/04/2015,) [10.5194/isprsarchives-XL-5-W5-143-2015].