Even water parks need surveyors! Saladin Keller explains how he RAPID-ly surveyed the 32,600-square-metre indoor water world Rulantica, in Germany.
Saladin Keller’s company, Keller planen + bauen, was in charge of planning the entire traffic infrastructure, as well as measuring the positions of points, distances and angles between the structures that conform Germany’s biggest water attraction park, Rulantica. Part of Europa-Park company, Europe’s second most popular theme park resort, the water world themed in Nordic style features 25 attractions, including 17 water slides, a wave pool, and a 250-meter lazy river.
Precision for waterfalls, slides and lazy rivers
Keller accompanied the plan and construction of Rulantica since its start in 2015. The surveyor started staking out a sewage canal of more than 2 kilometres in length that today connects the entire park.
Equipped with Leica Geosystems hardware and software, Keller has been able to provide all surveying services for the plan and construction of the water park. To measure and position the complex geometry of the aquatic fantasy world, Keller used:
Leica Viva TS16 total station
Leica CS20 field controller
Leica Viva GS16 smart antenna
Leica RTC360 3D laser scanner
Leica Captivate surveying field software
Leica Infinity survey software
Leica Cyclone REGISTER point cloud registration software
This portfolio has enabled him to work on diverse projects within Rulantica. Some of his tasks included staking out pipes, performing construction survey, including planning roads, parking spots, and staking out for construction companies (street height, kerbs, green areas, pools).
“Working on diverse tasks within the Europa-Park complex, including the new water park Rulantica, is a challenging but rewarding project. I feel privileged to be working on it and love seeing how new attractions are being constructed,” said Keller. “The project timeline often demands instruments of the highest precision and accuracy that also enable me to work under any given weather conditions. With the Leica Geosystems instruments, I am able to react fast to my customer’s needs and deliver the best results.”
Once Keller surveys an area, he works with craftsmen who need the gathered data, namely electricians and construction workers. Depending on the needs, Keller provides planning documentation, such as site and location maps, longitudinal profiles and cross sections in diverse formats, such as dwg, dxf, rcp, and pdfs.
Shifting from construction to surveying total stations
As some surveyors do, Keller studied Civil Engineering and entered the surveying business through construction projects. Keller started to measure and stakeout points with GNSS for construction. As his projects grew in complexity, he acquired a TS16 total station and GS16 smart antenna to position himself on the field after comparing and testing surveying brands.
After only two days of training by a representative from Leica Geosystems, Keller was ready to transition from construction to surveying instruments.
“The biggest advantage of working with the Leica Viva TS16 is re-sectioning with a SmartPole as it helps me to save a lot of time. Repositioning the instrument is also extremely comfortable. The prism-tracking functionality of the TS16 in case of lost line of sight makes my life easier, so does the range between the controller and the total station."
After the surveying total station and GNSS, Keller added to his portfolio an RTC360 3D laser scanner. Geared with the 3D laser scanner, he is able to scan the Europa-Park by himself – a challenging undertaking where he needs to be fast, agile and precise. Having the RTC360 in his toolbox also allows Keller to address any urgent requests on site. When time is premium and maintenance work needs to be done, his laser scanning services are requested to help re-build parts, adjust pipes, and map utilities.
“After doing a laser scan test in an area of the park with the RTC360 everybody was thrilled about how amazing it looks and how fast it is."
Self-made surveying business
Keller got started in surveying with GNSS and, as projects started to rise, he expanded his portfolio with robotic total stations. Today, equipped with the fastest laser scanner he is even able to beat tenders and take on the comprehensive task of providing laser scanning services for construction and maintenance to Europe’s second-largest theme park. By expanding his equipment portfolio, this entrepreneur has been able to provide new services to his customers.
This blog is adapted from Hexagon (2022) Surveying Germany’s Biggest Aqua Park.