Whilst still a relatively new surveying method, most Surveyors don’t go through a week without using their version of GPS to install site control, or establish a level datum.
The GPS (Global Positioning System) is used to position a point in three dimensions on the Ordnance Survey National Grid, and to Ordnance Survey Datum. It has become the only accepted method for gaining an Ordnance Survey level datum across the UK, so it essential in the fields of flood risk assessments and flood plain mapping.
The benefit of this technology is to provide all surveys on a common grid system, so they can be meshed together with the latest Ordnance Survey mapping, giving our surveys some context in the surrounding area.
Over time GPS equipment has developed, and is now at a point where results can be obtained in real time using an active network of Ordnance Survey stations and a mobile phone link.
This technology is still evolving, and recently we have had the benefit of additional satellites being launched through the European Galileo programme which will improve the coverage of GPS when used in combination with the existing American satellites.