RMBL has two types of GPS units and one conventional survey unit. To collect initial coordinates for a proposed site, you should use the GeoXT. To map your site, or collect spatial data for your research project, you can use any of the three. For more information about each unit, click here.
TO USE THE GEOXT:
1.) MAKE AN APPOINTMENT with the GPS technician (firstname.lastname@example.org) to get trained. Do this 1 week before you
want to go into the field. If you've already been trained, you can skip this step, although it is a good idea to
check with them at least once at the beginning of the season to see if any procedure or equipment has
change. The appointment will include 1/2 hour of hands on training with the equipment, building your data
dictionary, signing up to use the equipment, filling out metadata, and information on receiving and
viewing your GPS data.
2.) SIGN OUT THE GPS UNIT. Make sure that you do this at least 5 days before you want to use the equipment.
You can sign out the GeoXT units on the sign up sheet outside of the GIS/GPS office (Willey 206). Make sure
that you sign one unit out for at least 2 days (one day to collect, one day for us to process your data). For
weekend use, be sure to sign out the unit by Friday at noon.
3.) CHECK MISSION PLANNING. Go to www.rmbl.org > GIS/GPS > GIS Info > Mission Planning. Software will be
available to let you see when the best satellite time are for collecting in your area of interest. Look for time
blocks where the PDOP is below 6.0.
4.) COLLECT GPS DATA AND RETURN UNIT. Make sure when you are collecting GPS data that you write down
the GPS filenames (e.g. smithx061214A), since you'll need them to fill out metadata. Return the GPS unit to
Willey 206 and lock into cradle! Make sure you return the unit before 5pm so that your data can be
5.) FILL OUT METADATA FORM (www.rmbl.org > Create Metadata). Bring your GPS filenames and Data
dictionary printout with you. If you collected data to "Map your research site", fill out form #2. If you
collected data OTHER THAN mapping your site, fill out form #3 "Spatial data for research project". Contact
the GIS/GPS tech if you have any questions about which form to fill out.
You MUST fill out a metadata form for all your GPS data. You have two options for this:
- Collect all your GPS data and fill out a single form (this works if all your data is the same type and you don't care about getting your GPS data right away).
- Collect some GPS data, and then fill out a form. Then collect some more GPS data, and fill out another form. To avoid filling out many forms with the same information, use our prepopulate tool. To use this tool after you've filled out your first form, go to www.rmbl.org > Database Catalog > Select either "Browse research site metadata" or "Browse research project spatial metadata". Select the form that you already submitted > Click the Prepopulate link > Enter in the new GPS filename(s) > Make any other necessary changes > Click submit. Using this tool will allow you to submit metadata as you go along (without spending alot of time), and you'll get your data much sooner.
6.) You'll RECEIVE YOUR GPS DATA after we receive a correct and complete metadata form for your GPS data.
TO USE THE HIPER PRO OR CONVENTIONAL SURVEY UNIT
1.) MAKE AN APPOINTMENT. Make sure you meet at least one week before you need to collect data. At this
meeting you'll select a localization, plan your data collection, get a brief explanation on how the equipment
works, and see the equipment. You will not receive any hand-on training at this point, since the tech will
accompany you in the field. You need to touch base with the GPS tech each time you take out these units,
even after you've been completely trained.
2.) SIGNING OUT THE UNITS. There is no public sign-out sheet for these units, since you'll be working closely
with the tech.
3.) CHECK MISSION PLANNING. Same as above. Keep in mind with the Hiper Pro, you need to look for time
blocks where the PDOP is 4.0 or below.
4.) COLLECTING DATA. These units require much more training than the GeoXT. For the Hiper Pro, you'll work
with the tech for the first 3 times in the field. For the Total Station, you'll work with the tech for the first 5
times in the field. Also keep in mind that while the Hiper Pro can be used alone, the Total Station requires 3
people to operate.
5.) FILL OUT METADATA. Same as above.