The process of land surveying continues to take a tech-savvy transformation thanks in part to the development of such technology as LiDAR (light radar). Based on high precision land scanners, along with advanced technologies, LiDAR presents a highly accurate measurement of both positioning and orientation.

The use of such technology for the process of land measurement and surveying is increasing around the globe, on some high profile projects.

For example, a company out of the U.K., 3D Laser Mapping, www.3dlasermapping.com, Nottinghamshire, U.K., reports its technology is being used to assess the damage that resulted from the earthquakes and tsunami that hit Japan this past March. According to the company, which provides a range of software and hardware associated with high precision laser scanning and mapping, the data collected by this technology will be used to assess the structural damage caused by these natural disasters in Japan.

This will also measure effects of soil liquefaction, which is the process where soil loses strength due to a natural disaster, for example. As pointed out by 3D Laser Mapping, the soil liquefaction is important to assess during such natural disasters as much land is reclaimed from the sea in repair.

In other news, MHP Geomatics Inc., www.mhp.co.za, Durban, South Africa, is a multi-disciplinary firm that provides integrated land management services in Africa. On the company’s Website it says one of its missions is to use the science of measurement and spatial calculations on the earth’s surface, and the depiction of this information in an appropriate format in order to support land management.

The company uses some high-tech systems and devices to carry out its mission. The latest is the purchase of high speed laser scanners in order to capture highly accurate 3D measurements. The technology will be used by MHP as part of a multi-million upgrade project for the South African National Roads Agency. The system, from 3D Laser Mapping, will help MHP capture as-built drawings of bridges and other structures.

Along with the hardware, MHP will be using software that can process millions of individual measurements collected by the scanner in order to help extract meaningful models and drawings.

Terrence Elliott, professional land surveyor, MHP Geomatics, says the company has been monitoring the development and use of laser scanners for a while now, and the company believes the technology has matured at a strong rate. With that, Elliott is confident the use of such technology will complement the existing survey capabilities at the company, as well as expose it to new applications and clients.