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LIDAR to the Rescue

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Wired has a story on the use of LIDAR (Light Detection and Ranging) in mapping damage to levees in New Orleans in the wake of Hurricane Katrina. Completed in two days, the job would normally have taken months to complete using non-LIDAR technologies. Not only that but “scientists are taking LIDAR a step further -- they hope to forecast potential hurricane damage. ‘We can play the “what if” game,’ said Bob Morton, a coastal geologist at the U.S. Geological Survey’s National Assessment of Coastal Change Hazards. Scientists can now fly over coastlines in the days before hurricanes and compare their data with expected storm surges.”

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