Oil Sands


Specific Oil Sands applications:

Choose a satellite surveyor with extensive oil sands experience

PhotoSat has produced highly accurate satellite surveying for all seven of the oil sands mines in Northern Alberta. We survey some of the mines twice per month. Our satellite surveys provide instantaneous snapshots of the elevation surface of the entire mine site.

Survey all of the inaccessible mine areas

This includes areas such as sand dumps, tailings beaches, and mature fine tailings cells that are not accessible by ground surveyors.

Continuously improving surveying accuracy and reliability

In early 2013, our mapping accuracy was in the range of 30cm in elevation for points every meter. By early 2014, in collaboration with the oil sands engineers and surveyors we improved survey accuracy to 15cm, the accuracy required by the tailings engineers.

Continuously improving surveying delivery times

2013 survey delivery times were about ten days after the satellite pass. By early 2014, we improved the survey delivery times to about five days after the satellite pass. In mid 2015, for critical mine areas such as sand dumps we further reduced the delivery times to 24 to 48 hours after the satellite pass.


Sand Dumps

Tailings engineers use our highly accurate satellite topography for surveying sand dumps. Read More

Mine sites:


Accurately measure the mined volumes in the pits, waste dumps, and stockpiles, as well as the volumes of the sand dumps and mature fine tailings. Read more