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3D Mapping and Lidar Technology In the Transport Sector

Lidar technology has gained a lot of momentum in recent years. The technology has become very effective and government institutions have started to adopt it. The U.S. government is considering putting some laws into place that will require all states to use laser technology to digitally map the entire U.S. highway system. This will give any Lidar technology company a lot of work to come up with game-changing systems. Laser technology is essential for improving efficiency and safety on our roads. Almost a third of road accidents can be contributed to poor road signs, roadside hazards, and poor road conditions.

Light detection and ranging (LiDAR) has played a big role in helping scientists map and examine built and natural environments with greater flexibility and precision than ever seen before. The most important place that this technology is put to use is in the transport sector. With the increased accuracy, visibility, and resolution, Lidar technology in the transport sector works best when it is operating at a ground level.

Due to its precision, Lidar is very effective in cases where there is a need to rapidly collect data. The accuracy of Lidar technology is overwhelming. Lidar works together with the global positioning system and global navigation satellite system thus making it very efficient and accurate. Any Lidar technology company is well aware of the applications of this technology, especially in roadway design, structural design, and transportation planning.

What is Lidar Technology?

The first mobile Lidar system came up in 2003. The system was mounted in a helicopter in the initial phase and later onto a vehicle. It was first used in Afghanistan to keep tabs on Highway 1, which had become notorious because of roadside bombings and other terrorist activity. The experts came to learn that the system had many problems with the most obvious one being a limited field of view. However, its applications proved to be useful and it also showed the potential of the technology.

Lidar System

There are many Lidar systems out there, but each system is made up of five components:

  1. Positioning hardware – The positioning system varies from one Lidar system to the other. However, there are some things that are common in all systems such as IMU and GNSS/GPS receiver. The IMU and GPS work together to create continuous reports about the best possible locations. When the satellite coverage is poor, the IMU manages the positioning workload. However, when the coverage is good, the IMU information is updated by GPS. High tech Lidar systems use several GPS receivers, distance measurement indicator (DMI) and an IMU.
  2. Mobile platform – This is the component that connects all the collected data into the system. The platform is calibrated precisely so that it can maintain differences in global positions between the imaging equipment, scanners, IMU and GPS. The platform also ensures that the connection between the system and the vehicle is working at all times for proper data collection.
  3. Video and photographic recording – This is supposed to provide details other than laser scanning. The video and photographs give color to areas scanned with the aim of providing real-world color. The system achieves this fete through the use of blue, green and red values in accordance with the geographical location referenced.
  4. 3D laser scanners – The lasers remain fixed on a specific place with only the lenses moving. Most Lidar technology companies create systems with several scanners to limit the number of passes required to capture the image. The scanners are also equipped with sensors that record intensity.
  5. Computer and data storage – The advancements in technology has made it less costly to process and store data. It is crucial for mobile systems to have the capability to process and store data from various sources and store video and photos with an accurate time stamp.

Lidar technology has many benefits. It is safer than traditional methods and saves costs compared to other systems. In the transport sector, they play a big role in documenting pre-accident situations. Contact ACI Corporation today to learn more!

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