Monday, January 24, 2011

Corridor Mapping

Recently we were awarded a contract to perform mapping along a 108 mile corridor through central Louisiana.  Our Mobile LiDAR crew completed the data collection over two days - each day collecting 2 passes in opposing directions.  In order to illustrate the ground covered, I exported the vehicle trajectory to a Google Earth KML file (see below).

Along the corridor, there were several areas where the alignment was uncertain.  Due to the ease of acquiring additional areas, our crew made additional passes to completely capture the necessary information.  The image below demonstrates how our crew made multiple passes along the new US 167 alignment as well as the old alignment.

The Size of Data:

Covering all that ground is bound to create a substantial amount of data.  During the collection, our system acquired 55,727 images.  In addition, we processed 170.3 GB of LAS files.

My colleagues and I are contemplating how many points were collected over that time period.  Would anybody venture a guess?  Feel free to post your guess!  Should I get a number of guesses, I may post the actual number.



  1. Hi Stephen, its a puzzling yet interesting question you've made. I think the size of laser data will depend on the nature of the terrain and also the speed of the vehicle. From my observation I guess it would be around 11 billion points :-)


  2. I've roughed out 13.8B points over the 2 day collection. Interesting that Abinod and I are so close!


What is Mobile LiDAR?

Mobile LiDAR (Light Detection and Ranging) systems are comprised of vehicle-mounted lasers, cameras and GPS/INS navigation systems to capture highly-detailed and accurate three-dimensional (3D) topographic information for surveying and engineering applications. Michael Baker International became an early adopter of Mobile LiDAR technology by acquiring our first system in 2009, with further expansions in 2014 and 2015 that increased our fleet to four (4) Optech Lynx SG1 Mobile LiDAR systems. Over that period our systems have completed more than 300 projects throughout 29 different U.S. States (and multiple countries), and encompassing hundreds of thousands of miles. Our project portfolio includes applications in roadway design, 3D modeling, railroad corridors, signaled intersections, utility infrastructure, asset management, pavement condition assessment and airport infrastructure.