Journal cover image created by MIT Lincoln Laboratory technology
In the September/October 2010 issue of Pathfinder: The Geospatial intelligence Magazine published by the National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency (NGA), a feature article discussed the use of LIDAR (light detection and ranging) systems to create high-resolution, three-dimensional (3D) terrain maps. These maps provide information not only for topographical models of terrain but also for analytical tasks such as detection of changes in a region, foliage penetration, and determination of road trafficability. Lincoln Laboratory's Airborne Ladar Imaging Research Testbed (ALIRT), an imaging laser radar that rapidly collects highly accurate 3D wide-area terrain maps from altitudes up to 9000 meters, was employed to help the U.S. military with relief operations in Haiti after the 2010 earthquake. The cover image (below) of Pathfinder is a color-enhanced ALIRT image of the Haitian capital, Port-au-Prince.
The National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency is the nation's premier source of geospatial intelligence. As a Department of Defense combat support agency and a member of the U.S. Intelligence Community, NGA provides imagery, geospatial and targeting analysis, along with image sciences and modeling for U.S. national defense, disaster relief, and safety of navigation. NGA seeks to know the Earth, show the way, and understand the world. For more information, visit www.nga.mil.
Posted September 2011top of page