Surveying traverse types

Written by charles pearson
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Surveying traverse types
Traverses helps with the planning of various construction projects like railroads. (ballast et traverses image by rachid amrous-spleen from

Surveying is used to indicate exact dimensions within a given area using a variety of disciplines such as geometry, engineering, trigonometry and physics. Traversing is a method of surveying. A traverse is a series of lines with measured lengths and directions. These lines are connected by points which can be altered, changing the traverse.

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The open-loop traverse begins at a control point, an intuitive quantity that changes depending on the independent variable, which is a finite length. All of the known control points seen within the traverse are called observations. The ending point of the open-looped traverse is similar to the starting point. Observations are forward and back to the points on the traverse's path. Observations do not go back to the end of the traverse, according to Autodesk University. When an open traverse is shown as a graphic, the traverse is a line with two ends that do not connect to each other at the ends, which is what is often called a line in geometry, according to ICM Survey Systems. Open traverses are usually used to plot out roads, driveways and garden paths.


The location where the traverse begins is known as a closed traverse, according to Autodesk University. For the traverse to end, the initial traverse point has to be observed. The surveyed reading that was taken backwards to the formerly observed location is horizontal and angular with the closed-loop traverse or is an observed existing point. When using the leapfrog method, a closed-loop traverse and redundant observations of distances and angles results. The leapfrog method is a mathematical way of figuring out an unknown function that communicates the numerical values of the intuitive idea of quantity. When depicted graphically, the closed traverse looks like what is called a shape in geometry, with the shape having no opening, according to ICM Survey Systems. Closed traverses are often used to mark boundaries such as with boundaries between two different properties or between the homeowner's property and the city or town's property.


The coordinates in the closed-connected traverse are not changed by adjustments made to the traverse. Errors made in the data collected through the process of surveying which effect the observation are reported in the traverse notes, according to Autodesk University. Then, the traverse is then adjusted so that the traverse arrives at the known coordinates. Closed-connected traverses are often used to expand a new traverse into an existing traverse, such as when a property is expanded.

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