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Open Access The Forward Propagation of Integrated System Component Errors within Airborne Lidar Data

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Error estimates of lidar observations are obtained by applying the General Law of Propagation of Variances (GLOPOV) to the direct georeferencing equation. Within the formulation of variance propagation, the most important consideration is the values used to describe the error of the hardware component observations including the global positioning system, inertial measurement unit, laser ranger, and laser scanner (angular encoder noise and beam divergence). Data tested yielded in general, pessimistic predictions as 85 percent of residuals were within the predicted error level. Simulated errors for varying scan angles and altitudes produced horizontal errors largely influenced by IMU subsystem error as well as angular encoder noise and beam divergence. GPS subsystem errors contribute the largest proportion of vertical error only at shallow scan angles and low altitudes. The transformation of the domination of GPS related error sources to total vertical error occurs at scan angles of 23°, 13°, and 8° at flying heights of 1,200 m, 2,000 m, and 3,000 m AGL, respectively.

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Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: May 1, 2010

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  • The official journal of the American Society for Photogrammetry and Remote Sensing - the Imaging and Geospatial Information Society (ASPRS). This highly respected publication covers all facets of photogrammetry and remote sensing methods and technologies.

    Founded in 1934, the American Society for Photogrammetry and Remote Sensing (ASPRS) is a scientific association serving over 7,000 professional members around the world. Our mission is to advance knowledge and improve understanding of mapping sciences to promote the responsible applications of photogrammetry, remote sensing, geographic information systems (GIS), and supporting technologies.
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