Robotic line marker shaves weeks of work for Brisbane Airport’s second runway

Putting the final touches on the $1.1 billion Brisbane Airport second runway project involves marking out all of the line work on the runway for pilots and other airport personnel to navigate and taxi on and off safely.

With more than 50 kilometres of lines to mark out, the contractors predicted a 5-6 week timeframe because traditionally line marking is labour-intensive work that involves surveyors walking the design and marking points at intervals along the way.

With the help of an innovative robot called Tiny Surveyor, distributed and supported in Australia by Position Partners, the team was able to save at least four weeks of work as the robot completed all the pre-marking in a five-day period.

Using an on-board, high precision GPS unit and a tablet for the operator to control the system, Tiny Surveyor automatically lays out a digital design quickly and accurately, to save time and increase safety.

“We look at it from an overall health and safety aspect and that’s what technology is about: making jobs and infrastructure projects safer and more efficient,” said Paul Coughlan, Head of Infrastructure Development and Project Director New Parallel Runway, Brisbane Airport Corporation.

“Productivity, speed and accuracy are the three main benefits of using Tiny Surveyor on a project like this,” explained Karl O’Toole, Geospatial Applications Specialist at Position Partners.

Tiny Surveyor is ideal for other line marking applications such as roads, sports grounds, fencing and car parks. It can be used with either GNSS or total station positioning to give accurate results.

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