The use of LiDAR has evolved dramatically thanks to new trends in technology that have allowed for higher accuracy and lower costs. As a response to the needs of businesses and the public sector, the demands on LiDAR trends have therefore increased for more and better density elevation data. The need for specific data is determined once a business or entity has conducted a major initial acquisition. Later, they decided what data they need based on factors such as changes in terrain, population growth, expanding infrastructure, industry needs, state planning, or federal programs.
Changes in Terrain
Natural disasters can create significant changes to the terrain of an affected area, making previously acquired lidar inaccurate. In these cases, LiDAR can be of extreme help for response, recovery, and long-term rebuilding purposes. First responders can utilize LiDAR to determine the location and extent of the impact and later on, estimate or evaluate what steps to take next.
Population growth and expanding infrastructure
Municipalities or counties that experience sizable growth require up-to-date lidar data to facilitate development and construction for undeveloped areas, infrastructure expansion, road construction, subdivision planning, etc. Public entities often require multiple sets of data, to measure progress or expand or modify an earlier plan.
Many industries are using LiDAR as an efficient method to replace labor-intensive data collection. The energy industry, for example, uses LiDARto efficiently map its transmission and distribution infrastructure. Also for power companies, lidar data makes the monitoring of powerline vegetation encroachment much easier.
LiDAR has proven its value over the years, thus making it grow in importance in many industries through its expanding uses and applications. The increased utility of LiDAR, its cost efficiencies, and precision have given entities newfound flexibility to increase the frequency of their lidar acquisition, providing them as well with a significant return on their investment.