Leica Geosystems is introducing the Leica SPL100 as part of the RealTerrain reality capture solution. It is designed to help airborne professionals more efficiently collect and process LiDAR data of large areas day or night in leaf-on or leaf-off conditions.

“Due to the large terrain mapping capabilities, this LiDAR system helps us efficiently collect data in our effort to study the biomass of the forests contributing to NASA’s Carbon Monitoring System (CMS),” says Ralph Dubayah, professor of geographical sciences at the University of Maryland, College Park. “We are now able to repeatedly map terrain providing critical insight for guiding forest management decisions, informing greenhouse gas reduction initiatives and climate treaties.” 

Combining the SPL100 single-photon LiDAR (SPL) and imaging sensor with Leica HxMap, the scalable post-processing workflow software, RealTerrain, enables, for the first time in history, the efficient collection and rapid processing of large area LiDAR data sets. SPL100 collects 6 million points per second with 100 output beams, and HxMap provides a complete single-interface post processing platform to create industry standard LiDAR and image data products. The efficiency gained by SPL100 acquisition and HxMap data processing enable larger and more frequent LiDAR data acquisition for applications such as dense vegetation mapping and change detection.

Space to Earth

SPL100 is the first sensor to be released by Leica Geosystems using Sigma Space technology since its acquisition by Hexagon last year. The new technology was originally developed in collaboration with NASA. Single-photon LiDAR technology will launch on its first space application, the Ice, Cloud and land Elevation Satellite-2 (ICESat-2), used to measure the elevation of Earth’s ice, in 2018.

The SPL100 is a useful sensor for the Hexagon Elevation Program (HxEP). Announced in 2016 using SPL technology, the HxEP is the partnering program democratizing high-precision elevation data for a wider audience, such as those working in disaster planning, precision agriculture and infrastructure design.

About Leica Geosystems

With close to 200 years of experience pioneering solutions to measure the world, Leica Geosystems products and services help customers worldwide capture, analyse and present spatial information. Leica Geosystems is best known for its broad array of products that capture accurately, model quickly, analyse easily, and visualize and present spatial information.