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Free Lidar data demonstrates potential

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Geospatial technology specialist 3D Laser Mapping has launched a campaign to give free access to Lidar data in a bid to showcase the capabilities of a new generation of mobile mapping systems.

The company is giving open access to point cloud data which can be viewed and manipulated using GIS software. This information can be extracted for use by businesses, academic research and for in-house training opportunities.

The data being offered was collected using the Robin Walk system which can be used to collect data on foot. The company also offers a vehicle and airborne mounted system.

The move comes as UK Chancellor Philip Hammond outlined plans in his budget to establish a new Geospatial Commission to look at ways to expand its open-data policy and make location-based data more freely accessible to enable economic growth.

“By launching this campaign, we’re already doing what this new commission has been set up to achieve,” said 2D Laser Mapping sales and marketing director David Primhak. “The chancellor spoke of using the commission to turn valuable data into tangible benefits, including job creation and cost savings. We’re proud to have pre-empted this announcement and hope we’re viewed as an example of best practice.

“We are passionate about the capabilities of our mobile mapping systems which can be used across a whole range of industries. This presents an opportunity to showcase this valuable data to a wider audience, allowing businesses to build a case to use Lidar mapping for future operations.

“Lidar data is often highly protected or restricted, with the Environment Agency one of the only other organisations in the UK offering open-source access under the government’s ‘open data’ policy.”

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