Photography Aircraft

Piper Navajo Equipped with POSTrack Airborne GPS and Leica RC30 Camera
Cessna-206Cessna 206 Equipped with POSTrack GPS Navigational System and a Leica RC30 Camera or Riegl VQ680 Full Waveform LiDAR Scanner

Bell LongRanger LIII with POSTrack, Riegl 480 Full Waveform Scanner, and Leica RCD30 4-band Digital Camera[/one_half][one_half_last]

Bell 206 Cropped

Bell 206 BIII JetRanger with a Riegl 560 LiDAR Scanner[/one_half_last]

Tuck Mapping provides precise flight mission planning, flying and acquisition of aerial imagery to engineering firms, municipalities, government agencies, architects, surveyors and planners for both the government and private sectors. We offer a suite of digital aerial photography products that provide geospatially accurate visual representations of the earth, and are useful for many mapping applications.

Our aerial photography is acquired using precise digital aerial mapping cameras, such as: Vexcel’s UltraCam Falcon Prime large-format digital camera and Leica’s RCD30 medium-format digital camera. Our camera systems allow us to provide a full digital workflow, from 3D flight planning through final delivery. All digital orthoimagery tiles are geometrically and radiometrically seamless and properly color balanced to spectrally represent land content as naturally as possible. Not only do final deliverables adhere to Tuck Mappings’ standard (and strict) acceptance criteria for digital orthoimagery, we utilize the client’s specifications and requirements to any existing digital orthoimagery tile size and layout structure.

Ortho products are produced by combining an area of interest’s digital aerial imagery with its respective digital elevation model. This is accomplished through the use of innovative software techniques, rigorous production processes, and comprehensive quality control measures. The resulting orthorectified image contains the image characteristics of a photograph with the geospatial qualities of a map. This facilitates the integration and sharing of data, promotes cooperative processes, and reduces the high-cost of duplication in database development.

Our UltraCam Falcon Prime acquires black-and-white panchromatic and multispectral color (Red, Green, Blue and Near-Infrared) imagery simultaneously in a single pass. This digital camera is extremely cost-effective for a wide range of projects. From a practical perspective, digital imaging offers rapid turn-around time. Compared to film photography, digital image acquisitions can be pre-processed and ready for delivery within 24 hours after the flight is completed. We typically have pre-processed image data on our FTP site or saved to a disk for courier delivery just hours after the plane lands. This rapid turn-around makes our clients and business partners more competitive in an industry that increasingly demands fast response and digital products.


Tuck Mapping is proud to be the first mapping company in North America to acquire full waveform LiDAR data and large format digital imagery simultaneously. The UltraCam Falcon Prime is tailored for high accuracy, design grade engineering mapping. This system collects PAN, RGB, and NIR data in parallel on a gyro-stabilized mount. The radiometry of this system is unmatched in the market today and offers the capability of delivering true-color imagery, pan-sharpened imagery, and color-infrared imagery. The RIEGL LMS-Q680i long-range airborne laser scanner makes use of a powerful laser source, multiple-time-around processing, and digital full waveform analysis. The combination of these two systems is unparalleled in the industry today.

Tuck Mappings’ expert flight crews, imagery specialists and aerial camera systems are prepared to surpass our client’s expectations. Our team of Certified Photogrammetrists, GIS Professionals, and Photogrammetric Surveyors create quality orthophotos with assured spatial accuracies. We follow extensive quality control methods to ensure all orthos are completed properly.

Tuck Mapping’s Project Managers Professionals are committed to customizing an optimal solution for your project. Although our office is located in southwest Virginia, our services are available throughout the country and we are available to complete your project expectations.


All aircraft and helicopters are equipped with a precisely surveyed Global Positioning System (GPS) antenna capable of receiving highly accurate positional signals. Additionally, each aircraft is equipped with a flight management system, which provides precision navigation guidance to flight crews during data collection, as well as functionality for project management and data logging. Sensor platforms are supplemented with a combination of additional equipment including gyro-stabilized mounts, dual frequency GPS receivers, and inertial measurement units (IMU). Tuck Mapping owns the following digital camera systems:

  • Vexcel UltraCam Falcon Prime – 139 MP
    • 100 mm focal length
    • Camera Digital Sensor Subsystem Panchromatic image size: 17,310 * 11,310 pixels
    • Panchromatic physical pixel size: 6.0 μm
    • Physical format of the focal plane: 103.86 mm * 67.86 mm
    • Color (multi-spectral capability): 4 channels – R, G, B & NIR
    • Color image size: 5,770 * 3,770 pixels
    • Color physical pixel size: 6.0 μm
    • PAN-sharpen ratio 1:3
    • Radiometric resolution in each channel: >>12 bit
    • Forward Motion Compensator
    • POS AV Navigational System with Applanix 410 IMU and Airborne GPS
  • Leica RCD30 – 80MP
    • 80 mm focal length
    • Image size: 10320 x 7752 pixels
    • Pixel Size: 5.2 μm
    • Dynamic range of CCD: 73 dB
    • Framerate: 1.25 seconds
    • Mechanical forward and lateral motion compensation along two axes
    • Applanix 410 IMU and Airborne GPS


  • 4 or 5 Band Digital Aerial Imagery
  • Digital Orthophotography
  • Aerial Triangulation (AT)
  • Softcopy Stereo Compilation
  • Planimetric/ Vector Extraction
  • Digital Elevation Models (DEM)
  • Digital Surface Models (DSM)
  • Digital Terrain Models (DTM)
  • Contours
  • Volumetric Surveys
  • Base Mapping
  • Land Cover Analysis

We have delivered thousands of black and white, color and color infrared orthophotos in a variety of image formats, including but not limited to:

  • TIFF with World Files
  • JPEG
  • MrSID


  • Annual base map update
  • Planimetric feature extraction
  • Image analysis
  • GIS base layer / Land base
  • Post-incident management
  • Engineering design
  • Asset management
  • Municipal and government maps
  • Right-of-way mapping
  • Alignment mapping
  • Public & private land development
  • Urban planning
  • Watershed management
  • Geography
  • Landscape architecture
  • Agriculture / Crop science
  • Environmental assessment
  • Soils science