Advantages of LiDAR over Radar


LiDAR and Radar are the latest remote sensing technologies that have replaced the traditional data collection methods such as photogrammetry and surveying. They are relatively easy to use and offer faster and more accurate services as compared to the traditional methods. But of the two methods, LiDAR has some advantages over Radar owing to the fact that it is more superior in terms of accuracy and speed. Below are some of the advantages of LiDAR over Radar.

1. Data can be collected quickly and with high accuracy: LiDAR uses laser pulses which travel at the speed of light and this enables it collect data fast and accurately.

2. Surface data has a higher sample density: LiDAR pulses target surface data which has a higher sample density. This improves results for some kinds of applications such as flood plain delineation.

3. Capable of collecting elevation data in a dense forest: LiDAR pulses have the capability of penetrating very dense forests due to the fact that they are airborne.

4. Can be used day and night: LiDAR pulses can be used both during the day and during the night thanks to the active illumination sensor.

5. Does not have any geometry distortions: LiDAR pulses are not affected by the geometrical appearance of the landscape where data is being collected hence the data will still be collected in its entirety.

6. It can be integrated with other data sources: LiDAR pulses can easily be integrated with other data sources making it easier to analyze the huge data sets within a short period of time.

7. It has minimum human dependence: LiDAR pulses have minimum human dependence or intervention since most of the processes are automated. This contributes to the accuracy of the data being collected and analyzed.

8. It is not affected by extreme weather: Unlike Radar, LiDAR pulses are not severely affected by extreme weather conditions such as rain or low lying clouds because it is airborne.

9. Can be used to map inaccessible and featureless areas: LiDAR pulses are strong and are capable of penetrating very dense and other inaccessible areas such as mountains and even volcanic remains and return accurate data.

10. It is a cheaper method of remote sensing in several applications: Considering the fact that LiDAR pulses are faster and more accurate in terms of data collection as compared to Radar, it is cheaper in selected applications where radar would be expensive.

11. Short wavelengths that makes it easy to detect small objects: LiDAR pulses have shorter wavelengths as compared to radar signals which make it possible to detect very small objects within a given area that would be missed by radar signals.

12. LiDAR can give an exact 3D monochromatic image of the object: LiDAR pulses are superior to radar signals. For this reason, they are capable of recreating the exact 3 dimensional representation of the object. This helps in giving an exact image of the object being mapped as opposed to the radar images that give symbolic representation of the objects.

13. LiDAR targets a single object hence easy to map: LiDAR pulses are designed to target specific objects within a given area as opposed to radar that targets multiple objects within a given area. This makes it easy to give detailed information about the object unlike in radar where multiple objects are picked while some may be missed in the process.

14. Lesser atmospheric interference: LiDAR pulses are designed to easily penetrate the atmosphere without much interference from the atmospheric composition. This helps in giving detailed and more accurate data as opposed to radar which may be adversely affected by atmospheric composition hence returning incomplete or inaccurate data.

15. LiDAR is airborne hence better positional accuracy: LiDAR pulses are sent towards targets from the air downwards while radar signals are mostly ground-based and send the signals from the ground towards the target. This means LiDAR has positional advantage over radar which helps guarantee more accurate data collection.

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