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Optics Express

Optics Express

  • Editor: C. Martijn de Sterke
  • Vol. 20, Iss. 23 — Nov. 5, 2012
  • pp: 25935–25947

Range determination for generating point clouds from airborne small footprint LiDAR waveforms

Yuchu Qin, Tuong Thuy Vu, Yifang Ban, and Zheng Niu  »View Author Affiliations

Optics Express, Vol. 20, Issue 23, pp. 25935-25947 (2012)

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This paper presents a range determination approach for generating point clouds from small footprint LiDAR waveforms. Waveform deformation over complex terrain area is simulated using convolution. Drift of the peak center position is analyzed to identify the first echo returned by the illuminated objects in the LiDAR footprint. An approximate start point of peak in the waveform is estimated and adopted as the indicator of range calculation; range correction method is proposed to correct pulse widening over complex terrain surface. The experiment was carried out on small footprint LiDAR waveform data acquired by RIEGL LMS-Q560. The results suggest that the proposed approach generates more points than standard commercial products; based on field measurements, a comparative analysis between the point clouds generated by the proposed approach and the commercial software GeocodeWF indicates that: 1). the proposed approach obtained more accurate tree heights; 2). smooth surface can be achieved with low standard deviation. In summary, the proposed approach provides a satisfactory solution for range determination in estimating 3D coordinate values of point clouds, especially for correcting range information of waveforms containing deformed peaks.

© 2012 OSA

OCIS Codes
(100.6890) Image processing : Three-dimensional image processing
(280.3640) Remote sensing and sensors : Lidar

ToC Category:
Remote Sensing

Original Manuscript: June 1, 2012
Revised Manuscript: July 27, 2012
Manuscript Accepted: August 19, 2012
Published: November 1, 2012

Yuchu Qin, Tuong Thuy Vu, Yifang Ban, and Zheng Niu, "Range determination for generating point clouds from airborne small footprint LiDAR waveforms," Opt. Express 20, 25935-25947 (2012)

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