Do you want to unlock the power of lidar data? Lidar data is a powerful tool for mapping the Earth's surface, and it can be used to measure the elevation of land, water, and other features. In this article, we'll explain what lidar data is, how it works, and how to interpret it. We'll also provide a list of the top 6 free lidar data sources so you can start your search. Lidar stands for Light Detection and Ranging.
It is a remote sensing technology that uses laser pulses to measure the distance between the sensor and the Earth's surface. When an airplane travels in the air, lidar units scan the ground from side to side. While some pulses will be directly below the nadir, most pulses travel at an angle (outside the nadir). Therefore, when a lidar system calculates the elevation, it also takes the angle into account.
Topographic lidar usually uses a near-infrared laser to map the land, while bathymetric lidar uses green light that penetrates the water to also measure the elevations of the seabed and riverbeds. The lidar system sends a pulse of light to the Earth's surface and the return pulses transmit information about the location of the feature and the distance from the lidar system. You can determine what attributes are available for each lidar point by querying the metadata. All lidar data points will have an X, Y location and associated Z (elevation) values.
Most lidar data points will have an intensity value that represents the amount of light energy recorded by the sensor. For more information on detecting and tracking vehicles using Lidar Toolbox, see the Detect, Classify and Track Vehicles Using Lidar example. Therese Reinsch: When the Lidar system collects the data, point cloud, all the lidar data points are not ranked as to what they are affecting. Lidar Toolbox provides many tools for typical workflows in different lidar processing applications.
With this comprehensive guide on interpreting lidar data, you now have all you need to get started with your project.