How does land surveying work?

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We use all kinds of measuring tools in our everyday lives: rulers, protractors, squares,

and tape measures, etc..

These work fine for small- and medium-sized projects, but what if we need to layout something

big like a road, bridge, dam, or pipeline?

Hey I’m Grady and this is Practical Engineering.

Today we’re talking about one of the civil engineer’s most important companions, land

surveyors, and we’re also going to try a little bit of surveying you can do at home.

This video is sponsored by Blue Apron, more on that later.

Surveying is essentially the science of taking big measurements, and you’ve probably seen

these guys on the side of the road looking through fancy equipment on a tripod.

Just about any civil engineering project starts with a survey to determine the legal boundaries

between parcels of property, the location of existing infrastructure, and the topography

and slopes of the land.

Humans have always had a penchant for building big stuff which means surveying is career

full of history and tradition.

Behind every wonder of the ancient world was an ancient geometry nerd who laid out the

angles and alignments during construction.

Surveying is also how we created accurate maps of the continents like the Great Trigonometrical

Survey of India, which took almost 70 years to complete.

I personally think everyone should aspire to accomplish something in your life that

can be prefixed with the words “great trigonometrical.”