OpenTopography is pleased to announce the release of a new lidar dataset covering approximately 545 square km of Chaco Canyon, New Mexico. The data were collected by NCALM for Dr. Wetherbee Dorshow and Dr. Wirt Wills to help reconstruct the three dimensional landscape, as well as model land use, in Chaco Canyon, New Mexico. NCALM is an NSF-funded center that supports the use of airborne laser mapping technology (a.k.a. lidar) in the scientific community and is jointly operated by the Department of Civil & Environmental Engineering, Cullen College of Engineering, University of Houston and the Department of Earth and Planetary Science,University of California, Berkeley. OpenTopography is the primary distributor of NCALM data.
Chaco Culture National Historic Park is listed in the National Register of Historic Places and was designated a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1987 (National Park Service, 2019). Below are two archeological structures within the park (top: Pueblo Bonito, bottom: Chetro Ketl) with the lidar data colored by elevation on the left, and the imagery of the site from Google Earth on the right.