Mission Planning with the Zenmuse L1 for LiDAR and Photogrammetry


LiDAR is a great option if a ground model is needed for a vegetated area. In preparation for collecting good, accurate point cloud data, we will walk you through the basics of planning a LiDAR mission with the DJI M300 and L1 sensor in this article. 

These specific settings will cover recommendations for data capture in vegetated areas, but different settings may be needed depending on the environment.

1. To begin, power on the controller to access the DJI Pilot 2 app.

2. Connect to a WiFi network or hotspot to ensure base maps will load to assist with mission planning.

3. From the DJI Pilot 2 main menu, tap Pilot 2.

4. Tap Flight Route.


5. Select Create a Route.

6. Select Mapping.

7. Locate your site by panning around the map and using two fingers to adjust the zoom.

6. Drop a pin to start creating your survey area by tapping on the screen on the boundary of your site.

By default, you will see a square shape. To move a pin, tap and hold to select it and drag the pin around with your finger. You can delete the selected pin by tapping the trash icon or by double-tapping on the pin.

8. After points are dropped to define the mission's boundary, the screen's right side should display the options for the mission settings. If not, tap the double arrows in the top right portion of the screen to expand them.

9. Navigate through the settings listed below to set up a mission.

10. After you have inputted all the settings, select the save icon.

Before flying this mission, please review our ground control recommendations. If AeroPoints are used for ground control, photos must be submitted with your LiDAR data.

L1 Photogrammetry

The Zenmuse L1 can also be used for standard photogrammetry without LiDAR. Begin by creating a route as outlined above in steps 1 through 9.

1. Once your mission boundary has been selected, tap the arrows to open the side menu and select the Zenmuse L1 Photogrammetry under Camera.

2. Adjust the mission name and the other settings listed in the table below by navigating through several menus in the app. When you encounter settings in the app not mentioned in this table, leave them at their default.

 3. Tap the save icon to save your settings.

4. Navigate to the camera settings by tapping the live camera view. The map and camera view will switch places.

5. Adjust the camera settings as described in the table below. When you encounter settings in the app not mentioned in this table, leave them at their default.

Note that in winter, or low light conditions, there are special considerations to make. You may need to slow down the flight speed of the craft (to less than 10m/s) and adjust the shutter speed to 1/800 or 1/500 to allow enough light to hit the sensor.

Failure to do this can result in a high ISO and will reduce the quality of the images you capture.

6. Double-check your settings in the Preflight Checklist and ensure Dewarping is turned ON for best results. The Preflight Checklist will appear when you start your mission.

Check the airspace on your site before you arrive, and remember to charge your AeroPoints and drone batteries before your mission.


I still can't do it!

We wrote these articles to equip you with everything you need to get the job done on your own, but we understand that sometimes this isn't sufficient.

As mentioned above, the information provided is a set of guidelines. If you still need help, make sure to reach out to your Customer Success Engineer, who will be able to help you further. 

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