Coverage Path Planning with Adaptive Viewpoint Sampling to Construct 3D Models of Complex Structures for the Purpose of Inspection

we introduce a coverage path planning algorithm with adaptive viewpoint sampling to construct accurate 3D models of complex large structures using Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (UAV). The developed algorithm, Adaptive Search Space Coverage Path Planner (ASSCPP), utilizes an existing 3D reference model of the complex structure and the onboard sensors’ noise models to generate paths that are evaluated based on the traveling distance and the quality of the model. The algorithm generates a set of viewpoints by performing adaptive sampling that directs the search towards areas with low accuracy and low coverage. The algorithm predicts the coverage percentage obtained by following the generated coverage path using the reference model. A set of experiments were conducted in real and simulated environments with structures of different complexities to test the validity of the proposed algorithm.