MP Geomatics has moved to a new home at

Contact Mark at :

About Us imageAbout Us image
MP Geomatics is a family run survey firm run by Mark Phelan in Kilcullen, Co. Kildare. Mark has over 30 years experience in the survey industry and specialises in Topographical Land & Engineering Surveys, Measured Building Surveys and Legal Mapping.

Mark worked for Peter Murphy & Murphy Surveys after graduating from college before setting up Maptech Surveys in 1998. In 2005 Mark's love for photography saw him secure the lead role as official photographer to Badminton Europe for all major sporting events including two Olympic Games and five world championships.

MP Geomatics is a combination of Mark's love for both surveying and photography with our mantra being quality and affordability with a personal touch.

"My background in surveying and photography has brought me to this exciting juncture in my professional life. I look forward to working with and delivering small to medium sized projects to my clients as it is those kind of projects that stir my senses and give me that unique hands on with both the project and the client."

Joining Mark as a partner in the business is long time friend and colleague Mick Davoren. Mick and Mark have been working together as a survey field crew since 1990 where they both worked for Murphy Surveys. After a few years away following different career paths the pair are now back together doing what they do best - MEASURING 


Need detail and contour mapping for design purposes

Learn More


Floor plans and elevations

Learn More


Land registrations, boundary disputes

Learn More


Putting your development in the right place

Learn More


Aerial photography, videography and mapping

Learn More

Mark Phelan

General Manager

Mark has over 30 years experience and likes nothing better than getting deep into a complex legal mapping problems as well as delivering value added topographical surveys.

Read More  

Michael Davoren

Operations Manager

Michael (Mick) Davoren is known as one of the best field surveyors in the business with Topographical and Measured Building Surveys his speciality.

Read More  

  • 28 The Green, Cnoc Na Greine, Kilcullen, Co. Kildare
  • R56 FD63


If you are like me and of a certain age you will have come from an era where GNSS system were cumbersome and extremely expensive. At best back in the late 90’s and early 00's an expensive €30k kit was primarily used for getting spot levels in open areas. Any thought of getting near a hedge or under trees was no more than a pipe dream in those days. 

Roll on 25 years and our GNNS systems are the most important tool in our survey toolbox. With the addition of new GPS constellations such as Galileo & Beidou it has become very rare to see fewer than 20 satellites on screen. I remember back in the day working with maximum 6 satellites and that was only for maybe 3 hours in any given working day. We had to tailor or days work around the best few hours in any given day.

 Coupled with the technological advances made in recent years we now have a mindset when we go out to do a topographical survey that we should get this entire survey completed with GNNS receivers. It has become commonplace now in our business that a total station is only needed for small areas of infill or key details such as ridge and eave heights on buildings. 

Just when we thought we could not take this technology any further along comes the TILT function. Using IMU Tilt has taken GNSS surveying to a whole new level. So what is TILT? Put simply it is the ability to record detail, such as walls, buildings and other detail, which would normally be the unique domain of a total station, without having to be vertically over that point. It allows the user to TILT the GNNS receiver up to 50 degrees out from the point of interest and the brains of the kit accounts for the tilt to correctly place the point in its correct location.

 At first we were very sceptical. It is just built into us surveyors that a pole needs to be vertical right? Well not anymore. We took the plunge one day and decided to test the function while recording the same detail with a total station. We were blown away how accurate the TILT function was. 10mm was the worst error and for a topographical survey that is well within tolerance. After exhaustive testing we proved to ourselves that TILT was the way to go.

 A year in and we have increased productivity by 30% on every single survey and that is not an exaggeration.

 The biggest moral survey test of all was to set out using TILT. Again, with trepidation we tested and tested and could not believe the results we were getting. You think increased efficiency while recording points for a topo survey is good. Just wait until you see how fast you move with TILT in a setting out environment. 

Of course there are things you really need to keep an eye on when using TILT. As the algorithm calculates versus the height of your pole you have to make sure that you 100% have the correct rod height input, otherwise you will be wayyyyy off. In addition, try and keep your rod height down at about 1.8m high and try and limit your tilt to 30 degrees. This will achieve the best results in our experience. And remember to calibrate your tilt sensor on a regular basis. Make it compulsory to calibrate the sensor before each job. It only takes 1 minute.

 In summary TILT has revolutionised surveying in the same was as reflectorless Total Station technology changed the way we felt when we took our Total Station out of its box. If you have not tried it yet, take our advice and jump onboard. For reference we use a combination of Stonex S990A, CHCNAV I73 and DATRONIX D20 GNNS systems. These things cost no where near the €30k of yesteryear.


Laser Scanning - Leave it at home every once in a while.

As an early adopter of Laser Scanning in Ireland I for one can certainly see the benefit of scanning and agree that scanning has changed the face of surveying globally. That being the case I believe there is an over dependence on scanning these days where more traditional methods can achieve the same end result for a fraction of the price and with a much faster turnaround.

Floor Plans come out of MBS 80% complete & ready for delivery within a few hours

Let us use an example and let’s start with a question. Do you need a laser scanner to produce floor plans, elevations, sections and elevations of a 3 over basement Georgian property in Dublin.

In my opinion the answer in NO. Of course you can if you have to and if you feel the need to use the equipment you have paid huge amounts of Euro’s for and of course the scanner and subsequent processing will/should achieve the same result.

But in my opinion using traditional methods can achieve the same results for a fraction of the price with a much faster turnaround.

Elevations recorded with Total Station and MBS

Recently we carried out a survey of a 3 over basement Georgian property in Dublin and completed the field work in two days and subsequent office processing in a further two days. We did it all without laser scanning and our client had the deliverable within 5 working days of giving the go ahead for the project.

How did we do it. We simply used traditional GPS and Total Station along with what I consider the jewel in the crown of floor plan and elevation software called MBS. Its simple to use with a combination of a total station, a windows tablet and a disto required for the floor plans and elevations. The software simply plots as you survey sending the measurements from the TS/Disto to the tablet based software as you work. Of course good control and survey knowhow is essential but that is the case with all survey disciplines. 

Recording roof plan detail with GPS

The hidden beauty of the software is the speed it allows you turn the field collected data in final drawings for the end client. Of course there is no substitute for laser scanning if you are down a mine, in a large quarry, surveying a crime scene or working on a busy highway but all I am saying is that there is still money to be made and time to be saved when you leave the laser scanner at home ever now and again.

In additon there is a tendancy these days to get a drone up in the sky as often as possible. We own two drones and use them for several applications but with safe access to a roof the easy option for a roof plan is just to walk it with GPS and get the results fast and quickly.

Its just a question of picking the right horse for the right course!


Quick floor plan and roof plan required at hotel in Kildare, Ireland

Client: Fitzsimons Doyle & Associates

Location: Carton House, Maynooth, Co. Kildare

Purpose: Deliver lobby floor plan, roof plan for proposed redevelopment in a hurry.

Carton House as viewed from above

Carton House in Maynooth, Co. Kildare is a well known hotel and leisure complex which has hosted the Irish Open Golf Championships on its famous Montgomerie course in 2005, 2016 & 2013. Like every old stately home there is never ending maintenance required. In this case the main hotel lobby and reception were due for renovation and as a result a specialist floor plan and roof plan survey were required. 

Like all major redeveopments time was of the utmost issue and as a result traditional GPS, Total Station and MBS floor plan tech was the perfect choice. On this occasion there was no time to laser scan the area in question due to the time required to process the point cloud data. 


After setting up intital site control to ITM grid and datum we traversed control into all major room to directly record fit detail for import into the specialist MBS floor plan software. In addition reflectorless total station was used to survey specific structural levels as required by the enginners. 

A combination of rectified photography and traditional total station methods were used to survey the roof plan with 2D and 3D Autocad drawings being the deliverable. Its up on a roof where drone technology comes into its own. While most of the roof was recorded with total station the rectified photo was useful in checking our survey as well as being an added value deliverable to the client. 

Roof plan and rectifed photo from drone merged in Autocad

The survey was completed and delivered within 3 days allowing the structual enginners get a head start on design keeping the project on schedule. 


Topographical and meaured building survey of rural Georgian Property in Galway

LOCATION: Newtown House, Co. Galway

DELIVERABLES: Topographical & Measured BUilding Survey



300 trees along 1km driveway was a test of patienceFloor plans, elevations, sections and a standard topographical survey were the order of the day for this Georgian property in rural Galway. 

As always the topographical survey was the starting point but with in excess of 300 trees to be surveyed on the 1km long driveway alone we were not long in rattling up in excess of 2600 points and had all data collected in just two days. A test of patience it proved to be with storm Timonthy blowing a gale around us for two days on site. 

A trip back to the office and 1 day later the topographical element of the survey was delivered to the client so they could get moving on some design elements of the project. 

To laser scan or not to laser scan was always the dilmena when deciding the approach for the elevations and floor plan element of the survey. We decided that a few days longer on site with total station and MBS floor plan software was the best approach as it meant fewer days processing the data at the back end of the project with no dilution of the quality and the client received the finished drawings within a few days of us leaving site. 

With expierence crews were able to split the field work for the floor plans and elevations on site with just two men gathering all the data for the floor plans and elevations in a further 4 days on site. Both men working individually, one outside and one inside with MBS on a microsoft surface pro tablet. 

Back to the office and two days had all floor plans and elevations procesed and ready for delivery to the client. At MP Geomatics we like the old school aproach whereby the guys who survey the site proceess their own data. Our guys like it also as it gives them a much more rounded working experience and not just labelled as a data collector or CAD technician. 

A section of the 1:50 floor plans of main house

In addition to the floor plans, elevations, sections and topographical survey we also delivered a series of aerial photographs and video to the client. With special focus on the condition of the roof after a fire destroyed some of the property in 2009 these images proved as valuable as the survey data to the clients architect. 

"This was a challenging project for us but at same time a project which is right up our street and there is nothing we like more than getting stuck into floor plans and elevations. The cherry on the cake for the client was the delivery of the high quality aerial photographs. It helps that we are also fully qualified photographers with our photogrpahy services a high added value product for our clients." Mark Phelan Director MP Geomatics. 

Front photo elevation of the property shot with out DJI Insprire drone


Primary School Floor Plans, Elevations & Topo Survey.

External elevation showing all glazing, panels, doors and windows tied to ITM grid and datumTASK: Survey a 300 pupil primary school in rural Ireland and do it during school term. 

Site Days: 4

Office days: 3

Deliverable: 2D floor plans and elevations along with detailed topographical survey of site. 

A difficult task at the best of times but given the weather that given week this rural primary school measured building survey pushed us to our limits. Day 1 in the rain was spent gathering all field data for the external topographical survey which we 99% conpleted with #Geomax Zentih 15 GPS with VRS link to Irish National Grid. 

Topographical survey showing levels, contours, boundaries, trees, adjoining buildings. manholes with invert levels as well as overhead lines both power and telecommunications. 

Day 2 and once again in the rain was spent working on the external elevations and given the deliverable specification traditional reflectorless Total Station coupled with MBS elevation software were the tools of choice for the job. 

The internal floor plans is where the project got somewhat tricky. As a fully functional school the only option for us to record the on site data was at the weekend. Day 3 in the rain saw the continuation of the external elevations while a second survey crew commenced the internal floor plans with MBS floor plan software. 

Internal floor plan showing room configurations, floor to celing heights, areas and all fixtures and fittings including windows, door swings, heating and all bathroom systems. 

A DXF of the external footprint of the building was the starting point for the internals with a combination of reflectorless total station and leica bluetooth disto linked to a Microsoft Go touchscreen tablet allowing us blast through the floor plan in 2 days. 

Day 4 and you guessed it more rain, saw us complete the field work wrapping up all elevations and floor plan data collection as well as opening all manholes on site to complete the external topographical survey. Day 4 was long and wet and in winter ultimately dark. We ended up working late into the evening to complete the field work ahead of the school opening again on Monday morning. 

A further 3 office based days completed all the CAD work resulting with the client getting delivery of the final cad drawings ( a total of 15 files) just 10 days after giving the go ahead for the project. 

Short winter days sometimes means getting creative. On this occasion we ended up recording external elevations in the dark with #geomax Zoom 50 Total Station bluetooth to tablet. Generator and lights to the rescue! 


Our task, measure a 5000 sq metre Georgian residence in a limited time window.

Anytime we get an opportunity, and of course if the price is right, we can think of no better way to spend the day than carrying out measured building sureys with dimensionally correct floor plans and elevations as the deliverable. 

After a high profile Georgian property in the heart of Dublin was purchased for a price that us mere mortals could only dream about we were tasked with the job of measuring its tight site and dwelling on behalf of the new owners architect. 

We had a very limited time window with only a few hours per day and 3 days to complete the field work so it was all hands on deck to get the field work over the line. 

After establishing network control with #GEOMAX GPS we set about getting the fundamental but always the starting point of such a project, the outline topographical survey, knocked out in double quick time.

Topographical Survey element of the projectThereafter it was a case of establishing control inside the buidling with a combination of #LEICA & #PENTAX total stations. Once the control was in the next step was to record a series of key room details on each floor to use as a base and as a self check as we handed the base DXF data over to our floor plan crew. 

Enter one of our favourite pieces of kit and something we find invaluable when carrying out any survey indoors, #MBS floor plan and elevation software. The #MBS floor plan software allows us record on site details in real time adding rooms and all room furniture, doors windows etc giving us piece of mind as we go. 

MBS software + disto + Microsoft surface GO = Productive on site days. 

Once all the data was collected on site it was a case of exporting and producing final drawings that were Autocad compatible to the client to aid the design and planning process. Included in the final floor plans were all rooms, doors, windows, floor levels, floor to ceiling heights and room areas. In addition all fixed services were mapped including toilet  and kitchen systems and radiators. 

Detailed floor plans formed the backbone of the projectAs well as detailed floor plans we were required to submit more simple contextual elevations of the front and rear of the property. Sometimes a difficult proceedure given the innacessability of major parts of the facade. Yet again that is where technology plays it part and in this case reflectorless total stations earned their keep allowing us shoot inaccessable points of the facade with the measurements yet again going straight to our MBS elevation software in real time. 

Contextual elevation showing the main elements of the facade.

In all 2 site days and 2 office days were all that were needed to get the project across the line. Back in the old days, and the old days were not that long ago, this could have taken up to two weeks to complete.