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Utilizing Lidar data in the GIS environment 

Utilizing Lidar data in the GIS environment 

Utilizing Lidar data in the GIS environment serves as a go-to technology for GIS analysts to provide accurate measurements. Which can be utilized in so many ways such as developing elevation models, mapping rooftops, assessing utility right of way, and many others.

What is Lidar data:

The Light detection and ranging (Lidar) data are deployed from either ground, spaced based, or aircrafts using sensors that utilize non-visible light, mapping the ground surface and objects present on the surface of our Earth.

Its sensors accurately measure the location and height information of various landscape targets.

Ladar data in the GIS environment lidar data in the GIS environment

When surveying using LiDAR, thousands of points are produced, and when imported into a Geographic Information System (GIS) produces a cloud of points. Point clouds are processed, using computer algorithms, to remove all but the first and last returns.

The remaining data can then be used to create a Digital Surface Model (DSM) and Digital Terrain Model (DTM) for visualization and interpretation.

A DSM is a model of the surface of the earth, derived from the first return points, which includes all the features on it such as vegetation and buildings.

Whereas a DTM is a ‘bareearth’ model, generated from the last return points, with vegetation and buildings stripped away. A DTM is particularly useful for seeing the ground surface beneath high vegetation.

Moreso, the different types of Lidar in use vary slightly in the way they process and acquired data. And taking notes of these various Lidar types can give you a head start on a project.

Enabling you to choose the type of Lidar to incorporate for the application.

What are the types of Lidar data?

  1. Airborne LiDAR

With airborne LiDAR, systems are mounted on aircraft platforms like a helicopter or drone. Light pulses are emitted from the aircraft to the ground, to measure and scan the distances and dimensions of what lies below.

  1. Terrestrial LiDAR

Terrestrial LiDAR, systems aren’t mounted on an aircraft. However, it is mounted on a vehicle in motion or a tripod on the ground. Terrestrial LiDAR systems often scan in several directions with the use of mirrors. This allows them to capture data from all around in form of a 3D photo

How does Light Detection and Ranging (LiDAR) work?

Light Detection and Ranging (LiDAR) is a technology similar to radar, using a laser instead of radio waves.
LiDAR principle is pretty easy to understand:

  1. it emits a laser pulse on a surface
  2. catches the reflected laser back to the LiDAR pulse source with sensors
  3. The time of flight traveled by laser is measured
  4. calculates the distance from the velocity of light formula “Distance = (Speed of light x Time elapsed) / 2

This process is repeated a million times by LiDAR instruments and ends up producing a complex map of the surveyed area known as a 3D point cloud (systems referred to as multiecho).

Modern applications of LiDAR data:

  • Agriculture
  • Archeology
  • Astronomy
  • For tracking changes in the atmosphere.
  • Land Mapping
  • Oil and Gas Exploration
  • Management of Parks and Tourist industry
  • Meteorology
  • Renewable Energy
  • Robotics
  • Tsunami Modelling.


Keep in touch to know how well you can explore your point cloud processing efforts by sending us a mail: [email protected] or view our contact icon to connect with us today.







Cloud-base GIS relation to Government

Cloud-base GIS relation to Government




cloud computing application diagram on white background

These are hosted vendor’s servers and accessed through a browser meant for GIS technology users or members of the public who intend to access maps.

Services include map service, data storage, and access, powerful analysis with applications, to manage assets and information.

Hence a decision towards adding cloud computing in your organization, process management, research methodology, etc. is referred to Cloud-based GIS.

Cloud-based GIS scope in government workflowCloud based GIS scope in government workflow

Web GIS application enables the sharing and use of traditional GIS possible. Recent trends as shown tremendous opportunity, providing higher quality, and cost-effective government services as well as creating a better relationship between citizens and government.

Improved digitalization within local government’s infrastructure such as city councils, governmental agencies, and departments is a growing use of cloud-based software solutions. Which are improving their functionality in many segments.

Since most of the paperwork, statistics, and public data is now digitized and more easily accessible by both governmental staff and citizens, the next logical step in this process is the adoption of cloud computing in regular governmental workflows. Including the scope and the sharing power of cloud-based GIS, this can definitely be branded as a future of GIS for the government.

A government service platform can be constructed into an organized environment. Leading to the transition of government function and promoting the upgrading of local industries and low economic system.

Remember in the definition of GIS, the Geographical information system is ‘CSTARD’ where “S” is storing spatial and non-spatial data. Today, GIS is focused on the cloud because, the cloud is gaining momentous in storing contacts, calendars, documents, articles, images, accounts, presentations, and everything in the cloud.

In fact, many private GIS-based companies and foremost vendors are developing cloud-based geospatial solutions. The market is expanding and so the government needs to take key aspects of “cloud GIS” as very important.

So why is Cloud GIS important for Government Parastatal?

  1. Cloud GIS is a more reliable server system; A more reliable server helps to discharge more efficiency to department’s workflows, delayed time, costs, and energy for various departments improves.

Improved flow of information is gained in less time, and you no longer have to collect data in the field, go to the office,                wait for it to upload, and start with the analysis. Enabling a better environment for government to execute their projects              and make decisions based on real-time data.

  1. Maintain government-citizen relationship; Disclosing government-held data to the public can help enhance services to citizens applying not only to different citizen initiatives but also by improving coordination among agencies, internal and external stakeholders. Cloud GIS solutions are perfect tools for driving citizen engagement by opening your data to public use and interaction. The data is already in the cloud which also means that it is just a few clicks away from publishing.


  1. Cloud GIS requires less maintenance; There is no server for you to maintain with cloud GIS – the vendor is taking care of it.

And focusing on important things is made easy. Hence maintaining your data and delivering beautiful and accessible                  web maps with the freshest, most compelling data for your community to make use of.


  1. Cloud GIS is Cost-effectiveness; The deployment of cloud GIS enables the removal of a complete level of acquisition and deployment expense.

The acquisition hardware, configure and install your software stack, and code against it, now you can simply sign in and            start making maps. No infrastructure means no infrastructure costs.







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