There is great satisfaction in helping data acquisition companies acquire an UltraCam photogrammetric digital aerial sensor, especially when it is their first UltraCam or their first digital camera system, as I’m sure readers of this blog can imagine. But imagine how even more gratifying it might be if it were the company’s first digital camera and its first UltraCam and if that organization was a small operation located just one mile from you in your home town. This is the case with Rocky Mountain Aerial Surveys (RMAS), a flyer based in my home town of Longmont, Colorado, that just acquired an UltraCamLp.
Originally founded in 1973, RMAS was acquired in early 2011 by Christina and Bob Louwers who saw significant untapped potential in the company. To reach that potential, the Louwers would first need to overhaul the business which included making investments in the company’s IT infrastructure and aircraft, moving the company from Centennial Airport (South of Denver) to Longmont, and restructuring the team. Christine Grahl, editor of GeoDataPoint, tells the story in detail in this article in GeoDataPoint web site.
Where Christine’s story leaves off is where the RMAS/UltraCamLp story picks up. It didn’t take the Louwers long to recognize the opportunities available for aerial acquisition companies with digital capabilities and so from the start the RMAS team began carefully evaluating digital sensors. As Bob told me, “purchasing a digital sensor is a significant investment for the company at this stage of its growth. We have to get it right the first time.”
Shortly thereafter, Bob brought in George Halley, formerly with Sanborn Mapping Company and I.K. Curtis, to fill the role of Director of Business Development. George, who has extensive experience with the UltraCam hardware and UltraMap software from his days with I.K. Curtis and Sanborn, helped guide Bob in the direction of the UltraCam. “The UltraCamLp is a great value,” George told me during a phone call, early in our discussions. “You can’t beat it as far as price-to-performance. An ideal system for RMAS to go digital.”
Given the proximity of RMAS to the UltraCam Support & Calibration lab in Boulder, CO, demos of the UltraMap workflow software and the operation of the UltraCamLp itself were easily provided. Brett Taylor, aerial photographer and sensor operator for RMAS, was impressed with the intuitive interface of the camera operator panel and the software tools. RMAS also received sample UltraCamLp data for evaluation by its business partner who provides post-processing for RMAS data acquisitions. “The team there is familiar with UltraCam data,” Bob told me at the time. “Consequently, they don’t expect any surprises.” Neither did I.
You can read the full announcement about the transaction on the UltraCam web site. In closing, I will just share the last communication I received from George Halley: “Thanks! Having this camera at RMAS makes my life as a salesman for Bob a LOT easier!”
-Jerry Skaw, Sales and Marketing, Microsoft UltraCam Team