Correction of elevation offsets in multiple co-located lidar datasets

Open-File Report 2017-1031
By: , and 



Topographic elevation data collected with airborne light detection and ranging (lidar) can be used to analyze short- and long-term changes to beach and dune systems. Analysis of multiple lidar datasets at Dauphin Island, Alabama, revealed systematic, island-wide elevation differences on the order of 10s of centimeters (cm) that were not attributable to real-world change and, therefore, were likely to represent systematic sampling offsets. These offsets vary between the datasets, but appear spatially consistent within a given survey. This report describes a method that was developed to identify and correct offsets between lidar datasets collected over the same site at different times so that true elevation changes over time, associated with sediment accumulation or erosion, can be analyzed.

Suggested Citation

Thompson, D.M., Dalyander, P.S., Long, J.W., and Plant, N.G., 2017, Correction of elevation offsets in multiple co-located lidar datasets: U.S. Geological Survey Open-File Report 2017–1031, 10 p.,

ISSN: 2331-1258 (online)

Study Area

Table of Contents

  • Introduction
  • Background
  • Method
  • Discussion
  • Summary 
  • References Cited 
Publication type Report
Publication Subtype USGS Numbered Series
Title Correction of elevation offsets in multiple co-located lidar datasets
Series title Open-File Report
Series number 2017-1031
DOI 10.3133/ofr20171031
Year Published 2017
Language English
Publisher U.S. Geological Survey
Publisher location Reston, VA
Contributing office(s) St. Petersburg Coastal and Marine Science Center
Description iv, 10 p.
Country United States
State Alabama
Other Geospatial Dauphin Island
Online Only (Y/N) Y
Additional Online Files (Y/N) N
Google Analytic Metrics Metrics page
Additional publication details