Metashape: No Completion E-mail from Create Ortho from Photo Package

Problem:

My TrueView or microdrones payloads collected dark photos on a day with low natural light (early morning, late afternoon or a cloudy day). What can I do to solve the issue?

Picture showing dark photos from a flight
Photos taken with a mdLiDAR1000UHR payload on a day that was cloudy.
Picture showing the camera settings
Camera settings.

When reviewing the quality of the photos, it is a good practice to check the settings of the camera during the acquisition, if the ISO is 1600 and the photos are dark, means that the default settings of the camera are not good enough for the light condition of your flight.

In this article we provide solutions for both issues, if you already collected data and/or if you are planning a flight in low light conditions.

Probable Resolution #1:

The flight was already performed, and the images are very dark. What can I do? There are 2 options:

  1. Leave the photos as they are, most photogrammetry software can auto adjust the color of the images before generating the orthomosaic. In this case, is recommended to raise the GSD of the orthophoto, since the image smear (blurriness) may be high.
  2. Use a 3rd party software and auto adjust the colors. This will improve the photos, provide something useful to identify features with the Image Explorer and with the colorization of the point cloud. Software like IrfanView can perform this task.

Probable Resolution #2:

I am planning to fly in low light conditions. Can I change the settings of the camera?
To change the camera settings on a TrueView or microdrones system follow these steps:

  1. Download the file: TrueView system or microdrones system.
  2. Open the file with notepad.
  3. Change the exposure time. Recommended: 1/500 for cloudy days and 1/1000 for sunny days
  4. Save the file.
  5. Copy the file to your UMS.
  6. Next time you collect data with your payload, the exposure time will be updated with the value added in the file.
Picture showing the inside of the TV and md file
Camera configuration file

In True View EVO, when running the Create Ortho from Photo Package tool you receive no completion e-mail notification and notice the background Metashape process exited.

Probable Resolution #1:

Review the processing log located in the folder under the Photo Package corresponding to the run attempt (PhotoPackageName\Metashape\PhotoPackageName_YYMMDDThhmmss\PhotoPackageName_YYMMDDThhmmss_log.txt). It would typically include three steps between the processing started and the run completed statements as shown here:

Processing started; 20210602T1545
Node; <machinename>
CPU; Intel64 Family 6 Model 63 Stepping 2, GenuineIntel
Number of GPUs Found; 2
GPU Model; GeForce GTX 1080, GeForce GTX 1080
GPU Mask; 3
Align Photos; 368.4
Build Orthomosaic: Import DEM or build mesh: ; 0.0
Build Orthomosaic; 504.2
Run Completed; 20210602T1600

Check the same folder under the Photo Package (PhotoPackageName\Metashape\PhotoPackageName_YYMMDDThhmmss\PhotoPackageName_YYMMDDThhmmss.psx) that was the source for the orthomosaic process to see if a Metashape Project File (psx) was generated. If so, open the project Metashape and see where in the process the processing stopped. Manually try executing the next step to see if there are any error messages given.

Can’t Create File

Metashape has a 256 character limit to the full path, including file names and extensions. There are several folders and names created under your photo package, several use your photo package name. Shortening the photo package name will often allow the automated processing using the Create Ortho from Photo Package button to proceed to completion.

Metashape: Can’t Create File Error

Failed to Build Orthomosaic

The details may contain a message, “Error: Can’t write file: There is not enough space on the disk (112).” Check the disk space to ensure there is sufficient space to complete the task. If not, remove unnecessary files and try building the orthomosaic again. The more photos the more temp space the process will require in order to complete the mosaic. Remember the ortho is generated in your user’s temp space on the machine before being written to the output location.

Probable Resolution #2:

I am planning to fly in low light conditions. Can I change the settings of the camera?
To change the camera settings on a TrueView or microdrones system follow these steps:

  1. Download the file: TrueView system or microdrones system.
  2. Open the file with notepad.
  3. Change the exposure time. Recommended: 1/500 for cloudy days and 1/1000 for sunny days
  4. Save the file.
  5. Copy the file to your UMS.
  6. Next time you collect data with your payload, the exposure time will be updated with the value added in the file.
Picture showing the inside of the TV and md file
Camera configuration file

If the review of the processing log shows the Align Photos completed, but the Build Orthomosaic: Import DEM or build mesh is not present in the log, and you used the Elevation Surface option to Use DEM and provided a DEM you just exported from EVO, then try closing EVO completely. Re-opening and run the Create Ortho from Photo Package again as your DEM file may not have been released properly to allow Metashape to import it.

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