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Standards and

Specifications for
triangulation,
traversing and levelling
SVY 501 Adjustment computations II

Course Lecturer: Dr Lola Olayinka

Shyllon Damilola Oluwatobi


050405051
Introduction

The accuracy of surveying measurements should be consistent with the purpose of the
survey. When evaluating the techniques to be used and accuracies desired, the surveyor
must evaluate the limits of the errors of the equipment involved, the procedures to be
followed, and the error propagation. These evaluations should be firmly based on past
experience or written guidance. It is important to remember in this evaluation that the best
survey is the one that provides the data at the required accuracy levels, without wasting
manpower, time, and money.

These surveys can divided in two broad categories namely

 Horizontal controls such as traversing and triangulation


 Vertical controls such as levelling

Horizontal Controls

Horizontal control standards. The horizontal point closure is determined by dividing the
linear distance misclosure of the survey into the overall circuit length of a traverse, loop, or
network line/circuit. When independent directions or angles are observed, as on a
conventional survey (i.e., traverse, triangulation), these angular misclosures may optionally
be distributed before assessing positional misclosure.

 General.
Primary horizontal control (Third Order Class I or higher) is established to serve as a
basic framework for large mapping projects, to establish new horizontal control in a
remote area, or to further densify existing horizontal control in an area.

Secondary horizontal control (Third Order Class II or lower) is established to


determine the location of structure sections, cross sections, or topographic surfaces,
or to pre-mark requirements for small to medium scale photogrammetric mapping.

 Instruments. Minimum instrument requirements for the establishment of primary


control will typically include a repeating theodolite having an optical micrometer
with a least-count resolution of six seconds (i.e., 6") or better; a directional
theodolite having an optical micrometer with a least count resolution of one arc-
second; an EDM capable of a resolution of 1:10,000; or a total station having
capabilities comparable to, or better than, any of the instruments just detailed.

Traversing
A survey traverse is defined as the measurement of the lengths and directions of a series of
straight lines connecting a series of points on the earth. Points connected by the lines of
traverse are known as traverse stations. The measurements of the lengths and directions
are used to compute the relative horizontal positions of these stations. Traversing is used for
establishing basic area control surveys where observation of horizontal directions and
distances between traverse stations, and elevations of the stations, must be determined.
Astronomic observations and GPS surveys are made along a traverse at prescribed intervals
to control the azimuth of the traverse. The interval and type of astronomic observation will
depend upon the order of accuracy required and the traverse methods used.

Traversing is conducted under four general orders of accuracy:

 First Order
 Second Order
 Third Order
 Fourth Order

Order First Second Second Third Thir


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Class I II I II
Station spacing not less than (km) 10 4 2 0.5 0.5
Maximum deviation of main traverse from 20° 20° 25° 30° 40°
straight line
Minimum number of bench mark ties 2 2 2 2 2
Bench mark tie spacing not more than 6 8 10 15 20
(segments)
Astronomic azimuth spacing not more than 6 12 20 25 40
(segments)
Minimum number of network control points 4 3 2 2 2

Manufacturer instructions for operation of the EDM or total station should be followed.
When using an EDM or total station, a minimum of two readings will be made before moving
to the next occupation point. All readings should agree within the resolution of the
instrument or 0.001 foot of the original reading. Determination of angles should be made
immediately after distance determination. Special care should be taken with the type of
sights used for angle measurement—fixed rigid sights should be used, not hand held targets

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Class I II I II
Theodolite, least count 0.2" 1.0" 1.0" 1.0" 1.0"
Calibration Procedures

Each year and whenever the difference between direct and reverse readings of the
theodolite depart from 180° by more than 30", the instrument should be adjusted for
collimation error. Readjustment of the cross hairs and the level bubble should be done
whenever their maladjustments affect the instrument reading by the amount of the least
count.

All electronic distance measuring devices should be serviced regularly and checked
frequently over lines of known distances. The National Geodetic Survey has established
specific calibration base lines for this purpose. EDM instruments should be calibrated
annually, and frequency checks made semi annually.

Field Procedures

Theodolite observations for first-order and second-order, class I surveys may be made only
at night. Electronic distance measurements need a record at both ends of the line of wet and
dry bulb temperatures to ±1oC, and barometric pressure to ±5 mm of mercury. The
theodolite, EDM, and targets should be centred to within 1 mm over the survey mark or
eccentric point.

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Class I II I II
Directions
Number of positions 16 8 or 12† 6 or 8 * 4 2
Standard deviation of mean not to exceed 0.4" 0.5" 0.8" 1.2" 2.0"
Rejection limit from the mean. 4" 5" 5" 5" 5"
Reciprocal Vertical Angles (along distance sight path)
Number of independent observations 3 3 2 2 2
direct/reverse
Maximum spread 10" 10" 10" 10" 20"
Maximum time interval between reciprocal 1 1 1 1 1
angles (hr)
Astronomic Azimuths
Observations per night 16 16 12 8 4
Number of nights 2 2 1 1 1
Standard deviation of mean not to exceed 0.45" 0.45" 0.6" 1.0" 1.7"
Rejection limit from the mean 5" 5" 5" 6" 6"
Electro-Optical Distances
Minimum number of measurements 1 1 1 1 1
Minimum number of concentric 1 1 1 1 1
observations/measurement
Minimum number of offset 1 1 -- -- --
observations/measurement
Maximum difference from mean of 60 60 -- -- --
observations (mm)
Minimum number of readings/observation 10 10 10 10 10
(or equivalent)
Maximum difference from mean of readings Ѯ Ѯ Ѯ Ѯ Ѯ
(mm)
Infrared Distances
Minimum number of measurements 1 1 1 1 1
Minimum number of concentric 1 1 1 1 1
observations/measurement
Minimum number of offset 1 1 1Ѯ -- --
observations/measurement
Maximum difference from mean of 10 10 10Ѯ -- --
observations (mm)
Minimum number of readings/ observation 10 10 10 10 10
Maximum difference from mean of readings Ѯ Ѯ Ѯ Ѯ Ѯ
(mm)
Microwave Distances
Minimum number of measurements -- 1 1 1 1
Minimum number of concentric -- 2 ** 1 ** 1 ** 1 **
observations/measurement
Maximum difference from mean of -- 150 150 200 200
observations (mm)
Minimum number of readings/observation -- 20 20 10 10
Maximum difference from mean of readings -- Ѯ Ѯ Ѯ Ѯ
(mm)
† 8 if 0.2", 12 if 1.0" resolution.
* 6 if 0.2", 8 if 1.0" resolution.
Ѯ as specified by manufacturer.
Ѯ only if decimal reading near 0 or high 9's
** carried out at both ends of the line.

Computational specifications

Order First Second Second Third Third


Class I II I II
Azimuth Closure at 1.7√N 3.0√N 4.5√N 10.0√N 12.0√N
azimuth check point
(seconds of arc)
Position closure after 0.04√K 0.20√K 0.40√K 0.80√K
azimuth adjustment † or 0.08√K or or or
1:100,000 or 1:20,000 1:10,000 1:5,000
1:50,000

(N is number of segments, K is route distance in km)


† The expression containing the square root is designed for longer lines where higher
proportional accuracy is required. Use the formula that gives the smallest permissible
closure. The closure (e.g., l:l00,000) is obtained by computing the difference between the
computed and fixed values, and dividing this difference by K.
Note: Do not confuse closure with distance accuracy of the survey.

Triangulation

Triangulation consists of a series of connected triangles which adjoin or overlap each other,
angles being measured from determined fixed stations. Triangulation reduces the number of
measures that need to be taped and for this reason is often a preferred method of survey.

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Class I II I II
Station spacing not less than (km) 15 10 5 0.5 0.5
Average minimum distance angle† of figures 40° 35° 30° 30° 25°
not less than
Minimum distance angle† of all figures not 30° 25° 25° 20° 20°
less than
Base line spacing not more than (triangles) 5 10 12 15 15
Astronomic azimuth spacing not more than 8 10 10 12 15
(triangles)
† Distance angle is angle opposite the side through which distance is propagated.

When practicable, all triangulation networks will originate from and tie into existing
coordinate control of equal or higher accuracy than the work to be performed. An exception
to this would be when performing triangulation across a river or some obstacle as part of a
chained traverse. In this case, a local baseline should be set. Triangulation surveys should
have adequate redundancy and are usually adjusted using least squares methods.

The standards of instrumentations specified for triangulations is the same as traversing

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Class I II I II
Theodolite, least count 0.2" 0.2" 1.0" 1.0" 1.0"

Field Procedures

Theodolite observations for first-order and second-order class I surveys may only be made at
night. Reciprocal vertical angles should be observed at times of best atmospheric conditions
(between noon and late afternoon) for all orders of accuracy. Electronic distance
measurements need a record at both ends of the line of wet and dry bulb temperatures to
±1°C, and barometric pressure to ±5 mm of mercury. The theodolite and targets should be
centred to within 1 mm over the survey mark or eccentric point.

Order First Second Second Third Thir


d
Class I II I II
Directions
Number of positions 16 16 8 or 12† 4 2
Standard deviation of mean not to exceed 0.4" 0.5" 0.8" 1.2" 2.0"
Rejection limit from the mean. 4" 4" 5" 5" 5"
Reciprocal Vertical Angles (along distance sight path)
Number of independent observations 3 3 2 2 2
direct/reverse
Maximum spread 10" 10" 10" 10" 20"
Maximum time interval between reciprocal 1 1 1 1 1
angles (hr)
Astronomic Azimuths
Observations per night 16 16 16 8 4
Number of nights 2 2 1 1 1
Standard deviation of mean not to exceed 0.45" 0.45" 0.6" 1.0" 1.7"
Rejection limit from the mean 5" 5" 5" 6" 6"
Electro-Optical Distances
Minimum number of days 2* 2* 1 1 1
Minimum number of measurements/day 2§ 2§ 2§ 1 1
Minimum number of concentric 2 2 1 1 1
observations/measurement
Minimum number of offset 2 2 2 1 1
observations/measurement
Maximum difference from mean of 40 40 50 60 60
observations (mm)
Minimum number of readings/observation 10 10 10 10 10
(or equivalent)
Maximum difference from mean of readings § § § § §
(mm)
Infrared Distances
Minimum number of days -- 2* 1 1 1
Minimum number of measurements -- 2§ 2§ 1 1
Minimum number of concentric -- 1 1 1 1
observations/measurement
Minimum number of offset observations/ -- 2 1 1 1
measurement
Maximum difference from mean of -- 5 5 10 10
observations (mm)
Minimum number of readings/observation -- 10 10 10 10
(or equivalent)
Maximum difference from mean of readings -- § § § §
(mm)
Microwave Distances
Minimum number of measurements -- -- -- 2 1
Minimum time span between -- -- -- 8 --
measurements (hr)
Maximum difference between -- -- -- 100 --
measurements (mm)
Minimum number of concentric -- -- -- 2 ** 1 **
observations/measurement
Maximum difference from mean of -- -- -- 100 150
observations (mm)
Minimum number of readings/observation -- -- -- 20 20
(or equivalent)
Maximum difference from mean of readings -- -- -- § §
(mm)
† 8 if 0.2", 12 if 1.0" resolution.
* two or more instruments.
§ one measurement at each end of the line.
§ as specified by manufacturer.
** carried out at both ends of the line.

Computational Specifications

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Class I II I II
Triangle Closure
Average not to exceed 1.0" 1.2" 2.0" 3.0" 5.0"
Maximum not to exceed 3" 3" 5" 5" 10"
Side Checks
Mean absolute correction by side equation 0.3" 0.4" 0.6" 0.8" 2.0"
not to exceed

Vertical Controls

Vertical control is established to provide a basic framework for large mapping projects, to
establish new vertical control in remote areas, or to further densify existing vertical control
in an area. The purpose of vertical control surveys is to establish elevations at convenient
points over the project area. These established points (benchmarks) can then serve as
points of departure and closure for levelling operations and as reference benchmarks during
subsequent construction work.

Levelling

Levelling is the operation of determining differences of elevation by measuring vertical


distances directly on a graduated rod with the use of a levelling instrument such as a dumpy
level, transit or Theodolites. This method is called direct levelling or differential levelling.
Indirect levelling can be done using the principle that differences in elevation are
proportional to the differences in atmospheric pressure. The difference in elevation between
two points can also be determined trigonometrically using vertical angles and horizontal or
inclined distances.

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Class I II I II
Bench mark spacing not more than (km) 3 3 3 3 3
Average bench mark spacing not more than 1.6 1.6 1.6 3.0 3.0
(km)
Line length between network control points 300 100 50 50 25
not more than (km)
(double-run)
25 10
(single-run)

New surveys are required to tie to existing network bench marks at the beginning and end of
the levelling line. These network bench marks must have an order (and class) equivalent to
or better than the intended order (and class) of the new survey. First-order surveys are
required to perform check connections to a minimum of six bench marks, three at each end.
All other surveys require a minimum of four check connections, two at each end. However, if
the survey is run parallel to existing control, then the following table specifies the maximum
spacing of extra connections between the survey and the control. At least, one extra
connection should always be made.

Distance (from survey to Maximum spacing of extra connections


network) (km)
0.5 km or less 5
0.5 km to 2.0 km 10
2.0 km to 3.0 km 20

INSTRUMENTATION:

Order First First Second Second Third


Class I II I II
Levelling instrument
Minimum repeatability of line of sight 0.25" 0.25" 0.50" 0.50" 1.00"
Levelling rod construction IDS IDS IDS†or ISS ISS Wood or Metal
Instrument and rod resolution (combined)
Least count (mm) 0.1 0.1 0.5 – 1.0 * 1.0 1.0
( IDS - Invar, double scale)
( ISS - Invar, single scale)
† if optional micrometer is used.
* 1.0 mm if 3-wire method, 0.5 mm if optical micrometer.
Only a compensator or tilting levelling instrument with an optical micrometer should be
used for first-order levelling. Levelling rods should be one piece. Wooden or metal rods may
be employed only for third-order work. In situations allowing neither turning pins nor
turning plates (sandy or marshy soils), a long wooden stake with a double – headed nail
should be driven to a firm depth.

Calibration procedures

Compensator-type instruments should be checked for proper operation at least every 2


weeks of use. Rod calibration should be repeated whenever the rod is dropped or damaged
in any way. Rod levels should be checked for proper alignment once a week. The
manufacturer's calibration standard should, as a minimum, describe scale behaviour with
respect to temperature.

Order Firs Firs Secon Secon Thir


t t d d d
Class I II I II
Levelling instrument
Maximum collimation error, single line of sight (mm/m) 0.05 0.05 0.05 0.05 0.10
Maximum collimation error, reversible compensator type 0.02 0.02 0.02 0.02 0.04
instruments, mean of two lines of sight (mm/m)
Time interval between collimation error determinations not longer
than (days)
Reversible compensator 7 7 7 7 7
Other types 1 1 1 1 7
Maximum angular difference between two lines of sight, reversible 40" 40" 40" 40" 60"
compensator
Levelling rod
Minimum scale calibration standard N N N M M
Time interval between scale calibrations (yr) 1 1 -- -- --
Levelling rod bubble verticality maintained to within 10' 10' 10' 10' 10'
(N -- National standard)
(M -- Manufacturer's standard)

FIELD PROCEDURES:
Double – run levelling may always be used, but single-run levelling done with the double
simultaneous procedure may be used only where it can be evaluated by loop closures.

Order First First Second Second Third


Class I II I II
Minimal observation method micrometer micrometer micrometer 3-wire center
or 3-wire wire
Section running SRDS or DR SRDS or DR SRDS or DR† SRDS or SRDS or
or SP or SP or SP DR* DR§
Difference of forward and backward sight
lengths never to exceed
per setup ( m ) 2 5 5 10 10
per section (m) 4 10 10 10 10
Maximum sight length (m) 50 60 60 70 90
Minimum ground clearance of line of sight (m) 0.5 0.5 0.5 0.5 0.5
Even # of setups when not using leveling rods yes yes yes yes --
with detailed calibration
Determine temperature gradient for the vertical yes yes yes -- --
range of the line of sight at each setup
Maximum section misclosures (mm) 3√D 4√D 6√D 8√D 12√D
Maximum loop misclosures (mm) 4√E 5√E 6√E 8√E 12√E
Single-run methods
Reverse direction of single runs every half day yes yes yes -- --

Non – Reversible compensator levelling instruments


Off-level / Relevel instrument between yes yes yes -- --
observing the high & low rod scales
3-wire method
Reading check (difference between top and -- -- 2 2 3
bottom intervals) for one setup not to exceed
(tenths of rod units)
Read rod 1 first in alternate setup method -- -- yes yes yes
Double scale rods
Low-high scale elevation difference for one
setup not to exceed (mm)
With reversible compensator 0.40 1.00 1.00 2.00 2.00
Other instrument types:
Half-centimetre rods 0.25 0.30 0.60 0.70 1.30
Full-centimetre rods 0.30 0.30 0.60 0.70 1.30
(SRDS -- Single-Run, Double Simultaneous procedure)
(DR -- Double-Run)
(SP -- Spur, less than 25 km, double-run)
D -- shortest length of section (one-way) in km
E-perimeter of loop in km
† Must double-run when using 3-wire method.
* May single-run if line length between network control points is less than 25 km.
§ May single-run if line length between network control points is less than 10 km.
OFFICE PROCEDURES:
The normalized residuals from a minimally constrained least squares adjustment will be
checked for blunders. The observation weights will be checked by inspecting the post
adjustment estimate of the variance of unit weight. Elevation difference standard errors
computed by error propagation in a correctly weighted least squares adjustment will
indicate the provisional accuracy classification. A survey variance factor ratio will be
computed to check for systematic error. The least squares adjustment will use models that
account for; gravity effect or orthometric correction, rod scale errors, rod (Invar)
temperature, e.t.c.

Order First Firs Secon Secon Third


t d d
Class I II I II
Section Misclosures (backward and forward)
Algebraic sum of all corrected section misclosures of a levelling 3√D 4√D 6√D 8√D 12√D
line not to exceed
Section misclosures not to exceed (mm) 3√E 4√E 6√E 8√E 12√E
Loop misclosures
Algebraic sum of all corrected misclosures not to exceed (mm) 4√F 5√F 6√F 8√F 12√F
Loop misclosures not to exceed (mm) 4√F 5√F 6√F 8√F 12√F
(D -- shortest length of levelling line (one-way) in km)
(E -- shortest one-way length of section in km)
(F -- length of loop in km)

References

US Army Corps of Engineers, Engineering and Design, Geodetic and Control Surveying,
Engineer Manual.

http://www.ngs.noaa.gov/FGCS/tech_pub/1984-stds-specs-geodetic-control-
networks.htm

http://www.icmsurveysystems.com/surveying_techniques.htm