Support for Rapid Environmental Assessment Using Airborne Lidar Technology
CORP OF ENGINEERS MOBILE AL JOINT AIRBORNE LIDAR BATHYMETRY TECHNICAL CENTER OF EXPERTISE
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In April 2000, the US ArmyNavy JALBTCX participated in the NATO-led Peace Support Operation exercise LINKED SEAS 2000 LS00 in Portugal. A main focus for the LS00 exercise was to evaluate a variety of sensors and tools for rapid environmental assessment. This concept is founded on the use of existing technologies from a variety of platforms including ships, aircraft, and satellites to fully and rapidly quantify the environment in areas of rising military tension. These data would serve to initialize models for environmental forecasting if hostile conflict arises. During this exercise, the JALBTCXs SHOALS lidar system demonstrated its capabilities for rapidly and accurately collecting nearshore bathymetry and adjacent topography for use in planning amphibious landings. Using state-of-the-art lidar technology from a Twin Otter aircraft, SHOALS collects 400 soundings and elevations per second with an accuracy of 15 cm in the vertical and 3m in the horizontal. At the LS00 mission, SHOALS proved its capabilities for remote-area measurement. During a 2-day deployment, SHOALS traveled 1000 km from the air base to Porto Santo located in the difficult-to-access Madeira Islands. During the survey mission, data were collected from the shoreline to depths of approximately 40m at three different sites. A total of 2 million soundings and elevations were collected over areas totaling 20 km2. This paper will introduce the role of airborne lidar mapping and charting for rapid environmental assessment of sensitive areas by presenting the SHOALS results from the LS00 exercise.
- Physical and Dynamic Oceanography
- Infrared Detection and Detectors