The rate of natural change in such dynamic environments as rivers and coastlines can sometimes overwhelm the monitoring capacity of conventional surveying methods. In response to this limitation, U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) scientists are pioneering new applications of light detection and ranging (lidar), a laser-based scanning technology that promises to greatly increase our ability to track rapid topographic changes and manage their impact on affected communities.
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Land-based lidar mapping: a new surveying technique to shed light on rapid topographic change