ILMF meeting will highlight Haiti LiDAR

Feb 10, 2010

The International LiDAR Mapping Forum (ILMF), a LiDAR industry conference in Denver next month, has just announced in a press release the addition of two presentations related to LiDAR data collected over Haiti (see this post and this post for previous discussion of Haiti LiDAR).

One presentation will be by Ken Hudnut of the USGS, who will discuss the application of post-earthquake LiDAR to evaluation of the ground rupture - or in this case the lack of rupture - associated with the event:

Imagery of the region damaged by the M 7 Haiti earthquake, including high-resolution photography and airborne LiDAR, has revealed a variety of ground failure that resulted from shaking. Surprisingly, the Enriquillo Fault seems to have not ruptured at the ground surface, so the negative result obtained from imagery has significant implications. The USGS issued a statement, based on imagery analysis, that because it is clear that the rupture of the Enriquillo Fault was clearly farther west than Port-au-Prince, and because rupture was buried deep on the fault, there is a significant risk of not only regular aftershocks, but also the threat of a subsequent large event that could occur even closer to Port-au-Prince. The probability of one or more subsequent earthquakes of M 7 or greater increased by about 3% for the 30 days following 21 January 2010. Although this is a low probability, it would be a potentially very high impact event. High-resolution imagery was crucial to this assessment.

Ken is a friend of OpenTopography and was a co-instructor at our Southern California Earthquake Center-sponsored short course on application of LiDAR data to studying active faults this past December.

The second ILMF presentation will be by representatives of Kucera International Inc. who, in collaboration with the Rochester Institute of Technology (RIT) and ImageCat, with funding from the World Bank, performed a high resolution aerial LiDAR and multispectral survey of primary earthquake damaged areas and fault zones:

Kucera’s presentation will review the performance of the aerial survey, the expedited processing and distribution of the aerial data, and potential future refinement and applications of the data.

I'll be attending the ILMF meeting and I look forward to both of these presentations. The Haiti earthquake is an important event in terms of being a model for rapid collection of LiDAR following a large earthquake, and I look forward to hearing about the lesson's learned by both the science users of the data, and the acquisition and processing team.