Laser scanning techniques are rapidly spreading to geological survey, mapping and research. Geologists are eagerly taking this new method to their toolbox as it is giving accurate height and position information regardless of light conditions, vegetation cover or small climate hinders, when compared to the traditional passive method aerial stereo photographs based on more or less visible light. Airborne laser scanning is active method where a spray of laser beams are send to the terrain to illuminate the Earths surface and photodiodes to register the backscatter radiation with a remarkable accuracy. Laser beams find their way to surface even trough considerable tight canopy of threes.

National Land Survey of Finland has started the production of the new nationwide digital elevation model in 2008. The new digital elevation model is a two meter grid-model with the height accuracy of 0.30 meters. In the five figures examples of the recently airborne laser scanned areas and few applications to geological survey are shown. The material is recently made easily available to government’s research institutes and universities. To companies and municipal authorities can get the material with a fair production price of the data copy.

The new accurate digital elevation data provides for new applications as well as it makes it possible to improve applications that have already been used. The new digital elevation model and laser scanning data results into savings and can accelerate several processes by a variety of users. In future laser scanning can be in use when excavating and quarrying geological raw materials with robotic technology. On line rapid measuring and detection can also be done by this method. (Nenonen, K., Vanne, J. ja Laaksonen, H. 2010 Laserkeilaus - uusi menetelmä geologiseen kartoitukseen ja tutkimukseen "Airborne laser scanning- a new method to geological mapping and research". Geologi.

Some pictures are also here: Experiences about the use of new DEM and here
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