CRAB UAS Flight Op 6 Details

Cowlitz County - Old Weyerhaeuser Landfill Site

Num. of Images Taken: 253
Points Collected (in millions): 8.9
Acres: 125
Flight Time (in minutes): 20

Cowlitz County Headquarters landfill is a 380-acre dump purchased from Weyerhaeuser for $17.9 million dollars back in 2014. The landfill is three times the size of the other counties landfill the Tennant Way landfill. “It dispose’s four times more waste than Tennant Way, said county Solid Waste Superintendent Don Olson.

In all, the landfill takes in about 400,000 tons of waste per year and is projected to have a 100-year capacity. About 20 trucks a day arrive at the landfill hauling in household garbage and pulp and industrial waste.

With this constant volume filling, County surveyors are tasked with surveying the mountain of garbage on a continuing basis in order to quantify the volume of garbage on-site as well as to comply with state ecology regulations. Keeping up with this much volume is hard work and one of the dirtiest, smelliest, grossest job that a county worker has to do. Surveyors were constantly disposing of their clothes into the landfill due to all the climbing up and down the mountain of garbage in order to get survey topo points.

This is when the county surveyor, Paul Galli said that there has to be a better way. Paul Contacted CRAB Design Systems UAS program and arranged for a demonstration. CRAB came to the site, flew 125 acres of the landfill in 20 minutes of flight time and collected more than 8.9 million 3D topographic survey points. Based on that amount of information, total volumes were quickly calculated using data post processing software. One of the surveyor’s out on site that part of his job has to walk up and down the mountains of garbage, after having witnessed this incredible technologic feat was overheard saying, “this is the best work day of my life!”