Types of surveying(a comprehensive classification)

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Surveying is a branch of engineering in which deals with determining the relative position of different features on, above or below the ground level. Surveying deals with both the measurements say horizontal and vertical.

Classification of surveying could be done in two ways

  1. Primary classification
  2. Secondary classification

Primary classification of surveying

  • Plane surveying

    Plane surveying is used for small projects and small areas. We know that the earth is oblate spheroid in shape and hence while doing measurements we should account this feature into consideration.

    But, for small projects, we can neglect the spherical shape of the earth. As the error is negligible, it is reasonable to employ plane surveying.

  • Geodetic surveying

    It considers the curvature of the earth into calculation and measurement. This is used for making the map of counties, locating topographical features of the earth, etc. Geodetic surveying is conducted by the survey of India department and is used for an area more than 250 square kilometers.

Secondary classification

Based on instruments

  1. Chain surveying

    In chain surveying, only linear measurements are taken.

  2. Compass surveying

    Compass surveying is done by either the surveyor’s compass or prismatic compass. It is used to take angular measurements.

  3. Plane table surveying

    In the plane table surveying, data is directly plotted on the drawing sheet.

  4. Theodolite surveying

  5. Tacheometric surveying

  6. Photographic surveying

Based on methods

  1. Triangulation surveying

  2. Traverse surveying

Based on the object

  1. Geological surveying

  2. Mine surveying

  3. Archaeological surveying

  4. Military surveying

Based on the nature of the field

  1. Land surveying

    Land surveying is further divided into the following classes

    • Topographical surveying

      It is done to determine the natural features of the country

    • Cadastral surveying

      This is carried out to determine the boundaries of field, estate, house etc.

    • city surveying

      It is done to locate streets, water supply pipes network and sewage pipe network

    • Engineering surveying

      It is done to prepare map of project.

  2. Marine surveying

  3. Astronomical surveying

You may also like to read Plane table surveying

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