Title

An Evaluation of Lidar-Derived Elevation and Terrain Slope In Leaf-Off Conditions

Document Type

Article

Publication Date

7-1-2005

Department

Geography and Geology

Abstract

The effects of land cover and surface slope on lidar-derived elevation data were examined for a watershed in the piedmont of North Carolina. Lidar data were collected over the study area in a winter (leaf-off) overflight. Survey-grade elevation points (1,225) for six different land cover classes were used as reference points. Root mean squared error (RMSE) for land cover classes ranged from 14.5 cm to 36.1 cm. Land cover with taller canopy vegetation exhibited the largest errors. The largest mean error (36.1 cm RMSE) was in the scrub-shrub cover class. Over the small slope range (00 to 100) in this study area, there was little evidence for an increase in elevation error with increased slopes. However, for low grass land cover, elevation errors do increase in a consistent manner with increasing slope. Slope errors increased with increasing surface slope, under-predicting true slope on surface slopes > 2 degrees. On average, the lidar-derived elevation under-predicted true elevation regardless of land cover category. The under-prediction was significant, and ranged up to -23.6 cm under pine land cover.

Publication Title

Photogrammetric Engineering and Remote Sensing

Volume

71

Issue

7

First Page

817

Last Page

823