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3 LiDAR Applications In Civil Engineering

3 LiDAR applications in civil engineering

LiDAR is becoming a vital technology for civil and construction engineering industries throughout the world. It is helping transition from 2D paper-based to 3D digital design. Each time more and more needs come to the surface, making lidar application critical to improving outcomes in 2021 and beyond. Here are some insightful applications of LiDAR in civil engineer. 

1. Planning

Civil engineering projects are most of the time large and complex. As engineers need to manage costs, government regulations, environmental hazards, survey reports, maps, data to plan and design projects amongst other things. This is where lidar comes into place and makes a huge contribution. By producing a 3D model of a scanned area, in urban planning, for example, projects can be planned, simulated, and tested virtually using point cloud registration software and LiDAR data. Lidar also helps with collaboration between engineers, project managers, and architects. As data can be shared giving the entire team access to current information. 

2. Monitoring

Many civil engineering structures need to be permanently monitored in case of structural failure, and if so early warning of it or the need for remediation work. LiDAR is crucial to survey and monitor sections of sewer lines that are inaccessible to humans. In this case, a drone or robotic vehicle is sent down the sewers to make a detailed inspection system survey. This technology is also useful to analyze, assess, and model a tunnel even before it is constructed or measures details in tunnels built to accommodate railways tracks or roads.

3. Safety

Ensuring workforce and civilian safety is a crucial role for civil engineers. There are additional safety considerations besides monitoring, that have an impact on the construction process. In geology, Airborne LIDAR can be combined with terrestrial LiDAR to monitor massive areas such as natural glaciers or man-made quarries. This is a great tool for fault analysis and measurement. At the same time, LiDAR is one of the fastest and most accurate methods for DEM (Digital Elevation Model). Using this tool hydrologists can predict the extent of floods and work out mitigation strategies.

LiDAR is on the run for changing the world as it is bridging the gap between the physical and the digital. For civil engineers, it means more flexibility and efficiency, along with new applications that will positively impact the industry.

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