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Optimizing Your RTK GPS System for Maximum Results

Surveying with GPS

RTK GPS systems are complex pieces of surveying equipment, and by planning ahead, regularly checking your equipment, and consulting with experts, you can make the most of your gear. This can only happen if the operators are qualified and understand the processes behind the equipment.

Let’s take a look at some of the ways we can optimize RTK GPS so that less time is wasted, the data is more accurate and ultimately, maximum results are achieved.

Preparation Makes a Difference for RTK GPS Systems

Preparation for land surveying can make a huge difference. Having extra batteries for your equipment is one of the easiest ways to prepare yourself because nobody wants to be stuck 20km from the nearest replacement when their battery dies.

Secondly, regular checks of your communication links are an excellent way to avoid wasting time. There is nothing worse than arriving at a site and being unable to obtain a fix. By regularly testing your radios or network connections before you arrive at a point, you can ensure that you get the most out of a work day and avoid any lost time.

Land surveyor working with a GPS unit

Next, it is important to find the right location for your base station. Avoiding “urban valleys” and forested areas, while difficult, will increase the reliability of your readings. As well, correctly leveling your base station is imperative to accuracy, and should not be overlooked. Taking the time to do it correctly can save you time and frustration down the line. When conducting large scale land surveys, it is worth considering base boosters as they will keep the link between your base station and rover unit operational and healthy as you move farther away. 

Also, in regards to proper base station placement, the elevation is key. Try and select high, open areas free of obstructions as this will allow the signal unimpeded access to the rover unit, and wherever possible, double-check the readings often as Active Control Points (ACP) for the satellites are few and far between.

Trust the Expert Opinion of Equipment Specialists

Hopefully, these tips have been helpful, and you will keep them in mind during your next land surveying project, but there is one more thing that can ensure you have a successful survey. Ask the experts! Land surveying equipment retailers have years of experience and should be your trusted advisor for all troubleshooting and offside questions. Trust that they will be happy to assist you as you embark on the journey of achieving maximum results with your RTK GPS land surveying equipment.

Bench Mark Equipment & Supplies is your team to trust with all your surveying equipment. We have been providing high-quality surveying equipment to land surveyors, engineers, construction, airborne and resources professionals since 2002, establishing ourselves as the go-to team in Calgary, Canada, and the USA. We provide a wide selection of equipment, including global navigation satellite systems, RTK GPS equipment, GNSS receivers, data collector systems, and more. We strive to provide the highest level of customer care and service for everyone. To speak to one of our team today, call us on 403-286-0333 or email us

About the Author

Nolan has been working in the surveying field since 2017, starting as a part-time student at Bench-Mark while attending the University of Calgary. He now works in technical support and sales helping customers find the right product for them.

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