The International Archives of the Photogrammetry, Remote Sensing and Spatial Information Sciences
Publications Copernicus
Articles | Volume XL-5/W5
09 Apr 2015
 | 09 Apr 2015


M. Pepe and G. Prezioso

Keywords: LAS ASPRS, EGM2008, point clouds, ellipsoidal and orthometric heights

Abstract. The ability to build three-dimensional models through technologies based on satellite navigation systems GNSS and the continuous development of new sensors, as Airborne Laser Scanning Hydrography (ALH), data acquisition methods and 3D multi-resolution representations, have contributed significantly to the digital 3D documentation, mapping, preservation and representation of landscapes and heritage as well as to the growth of research in this fields.

However, GNSS systems led to the use of the ellipsoidal height; to transform this height in orthometric is necessary to know a geoid undulation model. The latest and most accurate global geoid undulation model, available worldwide, is EGM2008 which has been publicly released by the U.S. National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency (NGA) EGM Development Team. Therefore, given the availability and accuracy of this geoid model, we can use it in geomatics applications that require the conversion of heights. Using this model, to correct the elevation of a point does not coincide with any node must interpolate elevation information of adjacent nodes.

The purpose of this paper is produce a Matlab® geodetic software for processing airborne LIDAR bathymetry data. In particular we want to focus on the point clouds in ASPRS LAS format and convert the ellipsoidal height in orthometric. The algorithm, valid on the whole globe and operative for all UTM zones, allows the conversion of ellipsoidal heights using the EGM2008 model. Of this model we analyse the slopes which occur, in some critical areas, between the nodes of the undulations grid; we will focus our attention on the marine areas verifying the impact that the slopes have in the calculation of the orthometric height and, consequently, in the accuracy of the in the 3-D point clouds. This experiment will be carried out by analysing a LAS APRS file containing topographic and bathymetric data collected with LIDAR systems along the coasts of Oregon and Washington (USA).