Unmanned Aerial Vehicle

What is a UAV?

A UAV is a “power driven aircraft, other than a model aircraft, that is designed to fly without a human operator on board.” (CARS).  All commercial unmanned aerial vehicles of the above description and all model aircraft over 35kg are considered UAVs by Transport Canada and are subject to the rules and regulations outlined by TC.

What are the functions of a UAV for surveying and mapping?

A common misconception is that a UAV surveys or maps the ground it flies over.  A UAV's sole function is not to do any surveying or mapping but to collect data in various forms depending on the sensor (photography, LiDAR, Magnetic) employed.  The data collected is then post processed to create the surveying and mapping products.

The UAV performs at the level to which it was programmed.  It must be programmed by a person with a firm understanding of the sensors being employed and the final scale of work desired.  Without proper flight planning the data collected by a UAV can be unusable to produce any products at all.  

JRCanMap's staff has decades of experience in flight planning and post processing of aerial imagery at various scales for various purposes.  Since we began offering UAV services for data collection, four years ago, we have completed hundreds of UAV missions covering tens of thousands of hectares.

How are the surveying and mapping products produced?

The processing of the data collected by a UAV is a rigorous procedure.  Only under the most ideal terrain (ie: bare earth) can fully automated post processing with software such as Pix4D, EnsoMosaic, or Agisoft create final products.  Processing most other terrains requires additional involvement by an experienced operator with specialized software on advanced computer systems to extract highly accurate final data products that meet client specifications.

J.R. Canadian Mapping Ltd. has been a photogrammetric data supplier for 15 years.  Our staff has decades of experience in 3D surface creation and spatial data collection.  Our staff working on three photogrammetric stereo workstations with advanced software applications are capable of the most accurate photogrammetric post processing.

What are the rules and regulations for UAV deployment?

Rules and regulations for the deployment of UAVs are in a constant state of change as the industry develops.  For a complete listing go to the following transport canada website which is updated regularly: 


J.R. Canadian Mapping Ltd. adheres to all TC rules and regulations for UAV deployment.  JRCanMap exceeds all of TC insurance, and UAV crew training requirements and holds a standing Special Flight Operations Certificate for the Pacific Region granted by TC.


JRCanMap's Customized X8 UAV


X8 Flying Wing

90 min operational flight time

Transport Canada inspected and approved

Up to a 20 km range from base station

Multiple UAVs, constructed in-house, can maintain/repair and modify to suit any condition

Tandem RGB and NIR photographic collection

One hour flight coverage with optimal photo overlap:

  • At 1 cm gsd (40 m AGL), 50 ha

  • At 5 cm gsd (200 m AGL), 325 ha

  • At 10 cm gsd (410 m AGL), 800 ha



Launching: hand launched or launcher

Retrieval: belly landing or net retrieval

Our launching and retrieval methods allow us to deploy to the most rugged terrains imaginable without optimal takeoff or landing areas.

10 hours continuous base station operation

JRCanMap always deploys with a minimum of three complete systems ensuring data collection is completed; no matter what!  



UAV Crew Qualifications and Certifications

All J.R. Canadian Mapping Ltd. field personnel meet Transport Canada requirements as compliant UAV operators with the following qualifications:

  • Level 1 First Aid
  • CN\CP Rail safe certification
  • Restricted Operator Certificate – Aeronautical
  • UAV Pilot ground school training
  • Hundreds of hours of UAV deployment and piloting experience
  • Standing Special Flight Operators Certification for the Pacific Region (allows for immediate deployment)
  • Class 5 driver’s license