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Cemetery PLANS and photogrammetry

Making the complex


Cemetery PLANS 

We use drone and photogrammetry, radar, historical images, and total station to create clear measured plans of cemeteries or burial grounds. These plans show marked, unmarked, possible graves and,

where detectable, surface features and the former cemetery layout.

For ease of use, we transfer ground penetrating radar results to a series of layered plans using AutoCad. These layers distinguish between marked graves, unmarked burials, and other subsurface features, such as fallen or buried headstones, fence posts, building footings, services, tree roots, wombat holes, or bedrock. Please click on the samples below for an enlarged view.

This plan of Hartley Vale Cemetery, shows visible grave markers and associated names. In our work process, this is the first layer to which new information is added. 

Plan of Hartley Vale Cemetery showing visible grave markers and subsurface features, from human burials to fallen headstones.

Prepared for the Goulburn Jewish Cemetery, this plan shows the location of marked and unmarked graves, as well as the footings of a mortuary building.

A different layer of the same plan shows post holes from a former fence and its entrance gate, as identified by GPR.  These features are shown together with an historic photograph and view corridor.


Photogrammetry is the step before the plan ...

It is the science of obtaining reliable measurements from photographs and digital imagery, mostly from satellite and aircraft. The output of this process is often used to produce either single images that are ortho corrected, or ortho mosaics of images that have been mosaicked into a single image. Both methods result in ortho images that have the geometric integrity of a map.

This example image is a section of an ortho mosaic image created by Gerald Steding at Cassilis Station. It comprises 244 single images, captured by a drone flying in transects. These images have been processed in dedicated software, georeferenced, and can be output as an ortho mosaic image, digital elevation model, or 3d map. Such images typically form the underlying base maps of our of cemetery plans.

A zoom-in of the same ortho-mosaic map of a small cemetery at Cassilis Station shows the strong resolution such imagery can provide. Also shown are ground targets or ground control points which are measured by total station for precision.

Plan Layering

This plan of Quarantine Station Cemetery No.3 at North Head, shows unmarked graves.

With additional information from the GPR, the next layer shows marked and unmarked graves.

Plan 6.3.jpg

A composite plan of Quarantine Station Cemetery No. 3 at North Head, includes marked and unmarked graves, a central carriageway, burial groupings, and other features of the former cemetery layout.

3-D Images 

Where clients request, we also advise on maintenance and restoration measures.

A non-photorealistic 3d rendering of methods for headstone bracing at Mersey Bluff.

More realistic, these images are examples of 3D models of gravestones. Close up photogrammetry is similar to aerial photogrammetry. It also consists of many single images combined in dedicated software to a 3D textured mesh model. Models like this can help with grave text identification, and also provide a great recording method for archival purposes

Using Old Maps

Bathurst COMP.jpg
Bathurst COMP 1846.jpg

These plans are from a GPR survey in the streets of Bathurst. Here, depth relationships between subsurface anomalies were coloured-coded. The dots shown represent subsurface anomalies reflected from historic building footings and features as well as underground  services including water, drainage, and telephone. These readings were overlaid upon an historic map, allowing a clearer picture of the specific features.

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