Road Condition Monitoring Utilizing UAV Photogrammetry Aligned To Principal Curve Of Mine Haul Truck Path


Mine haul roads degrade rapidly due to extreme loads on sub-optimal construction materials. Unmanned aerial vehicles (UAV) are suited to quantify large-area road-network conditions, such as surface roughness, defects, and grade to optimize remediation of poor conditions and reduce overall costs. Mine haul roads present unique challenges, such as material type and edge characteristics, to automatic road detection that often fail, requiring manual road input. This research proposes a new method for analysis using the road center determined by principal curve analysis of a haul truck's Global Navigation Satellite System (GNSS) traces; analysis grids were created from this center line. A dense point cloud from UAV photogrammetry was generated, and multiple linear regression analysis was conducted on each individual grid. The root mean square error in each grid indicates the surface roughness, and the change of slope between grids indicates the road grade inconsistencies. This method was applied to 26 road sections, and the results were validated by images taken from the truck operator's vantage point. Critical defects were identified including excessive pothole formation, corrugation, depressions retaining water, and narrowing of travel lane. The results demonstrate this is a valid method of road identification and quantification of road defects at a mine site.


Mining Engineering

Keywords and Phrases

Photogrammetry; Principal curve; Road defect; Road maintenance; Unmanned aerial vehicle

International Standard Serial Number (ISSN)

2524-3470; 2524-3462

Document Type

Article - Journal

Document Version


File Type





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Publication Date

01 Feb 2024