New Mexico Geological Society Annual Spring Meeting
April 13, 2018

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Photogrammetry of Fluvial Outcrops in Toadstool Geologic Park, Nebraska and Angel Peak, New Mexico

Wade Walter Mans1 and Gary Weissman

Department of Earth & Planetary Sciences, University of New Mexico, Albuquerque, NM, 87131,

Large-scale 3D models of fluvial outcrops can improve our ability to map and interpret geometries of sedimentologic structures (facies) in complex fluvial systems. 3D modeling can be used to generate ultra-high-resolution digital elevation models and orthophotomosaics of the fluvial outcrops and provide high spatial details of the study areas. Objectives include the further development of procedures to take photographs from both ground-based cameras and UAVs to build 3D models of outcrops. Agisoft Photoscan software is used to perform the structure-from-motion photogrammetric processing of the digital images and generate both 3D spatial and multispectral models of the outcrop. Preliminary mapping of the two study sites, Toadstool Geologic Park in Nebraska and Angel Peak Natural Area in New Mexico, demonstrates that high-resolution modeling over these complex large-scale stratigraphic structures (e.g., bounding surfaces, faults, compositional changes) allows for quicker more comprehensive understanding of the development and arrangement of the geology of the areas studied. The resolution of the models makes drawing relationships between smaller isolated features in stratigraphic structures to the surrounding region more effective, and the 3D nature of the models allows for correlation of features around complex terrain because these features can be viewed from multiple angles not accessible from the ground.

These technologies and procedures allow the gathering of detailed information from remote areas and terrain which is difficult to navigate or study in any other way. It is cost effective and time efficient, allowing for frequent study of large areas. The very high-resolution information can be used in GIS applications as well as with the UAV gathered imagery. This study has implications for understanding the permeability structure of rock, thus it has importance for both petroleum and ground water studies.

pp. 52

2018 New Mexico Geological Society Annual Spring Meeting
April 13, 2018, Macey Center, New Mexico Tech campus, Socorro, NM