• Lake Fryxell Facility Zone and surrounding area, Taylor Valley, Antarctica
     Lake Fryxell Facility Zone and surrounding area, Taylor Valley, Antarctica
  • False-color image from Titan Multi-Wave intensity, University of Houston
     False-color image from Titan Multi-Wave intensity, University of Houston
  • Dragon's Back Pressure Ridge, San Andreas Fault
     Dragon's Back Pressure Ridge, San Andreas Fault
  • Dune Fields near White Sands, New Mexico
     Dune Fields near White Sands, New Mexico
  • Ancient Mayan settlement of Caracol, Belize
     Ancient Mayan settlement of Caracol, Belize

Welcome

The mission of the National Center for Airborne Laser Mapping (NCALM) is to:

  • Provide research-quality airborne light detection and ranging (LiDAR or lidar) observations to the scientific community.
  • Advance the state of the art in airborne laser mapping.
  • Train and educate graduate students with knowledge of airborne mapping to meet the needs of academic institutions, government agencies, and private industry.

NCALM is based at the University of Houston and is operated in partnership with the University of California, Berkeley. The center is supported by the National Science Foundation and is associated with the multi-disciplinary Geosensing Systems Engineering & Sciences graduate program at the University of Houston.

News

NCALM Researchers Publish Article on Airborne Archaeology
December 18, 2015
There have been several print and online articles written in the last few months focused on discovering "lost" cities in Central America, airborne archaeological lidar mapping, and ground...
NCALM Researchers Publish Article on Airborne Archaeology

There have been several print and online articles written in the last few months focused on discovering "lost" cities in Central America, airborne archaeological lidar mapping, and ground exploration at archaeology sites. Many of these papers discuss projects which NCALM has been involved in during the past six years. In the current issue of American Scientist, three NCALM researchers published an article about "Archaeology from the Air." The essay offers the unique perspective of the mapping engineer/scientist and covers the history and technological advances of lidar for use in archaeology.

The feature about "the most significant new technology to be introduced to archaeology since radiocarbon dating" can be read here.

First Ph.D. Candidate from GSES Program Successfully Defends Dissertation
December 10, 2015
The Geosensing Systems Engineering & Sciences (GSES) program had its first Ph.D. candidate successfully defend his dissertation. Arpan Kusari defended on, “Precise Registration of Laser...
First Ph.D. Candidate from GSES Program Successfully Defends Dissertation

The Geosensing Systems Engineering & Sciences (GSES) program had its first Ph.D. candidate successfully defend his dissertation. Arpan Kusari defended on, “Precise Registration of Laser Mapping Data by Planar Feature Extraction for Deformation Mapping.” Determination of near-field displacements for earthquakes has not been possible, until now, using existing remote sensing techniques and methods. In this thesis, the determination of realistic near-field displacement estimates was investigated using Airborne Laser Scanning and terrestrial-based Mobile Laser Scanning point clouds gathered in a repeated manner. The extraction of sub-centimeter complex estimates in an automated fashion showed that this could provide a reliable and robust technique for determining earthquake displacements for use in fault mechanics, therefore enhancing the general understanding of earthquakes.

Arpan has accepted a position in the Product Development department at the Ford Motor Company. He will be working on automated driving technologies. Arpan’s advisor was Dr. Craig Glennie.

Congratulations, Arpan!

Ph.D. Student Opportunities in Geosensing Systems Engineering & Sciences at the University of Houston
November 12, 2015
The Geosensing Systems Engineering & Sciences (GSES) Graduate Program in the Department of Civil & Environmental Engineering, in conjunction with the NSF National Center for...
Ph.D. Student Opportunities in Geosensing Systems Engineering & Sciences at the University of Houston

The Geosensing Systems Engineering & Sciences (GSES) Graduate Program in the Department of Civil & Environmental Engineering, in conjunction with the NSF National Center for Airborne Laser Mapping (NCALM), is seeking qualified applicants (with backgrounds in engineering, geomatics, geosciences, physics, astronomy, computer sciences, or geography) interested in: Design, development, and testing of lidar, digital image, and hyperspectral sensors; Research applications of lidar observations, including when combined with digital imagery or hyperspectral measurements; Study of satellite altimetry for applications in hydrology, glaciology, geodynamics, and sea levels; Applications of terrestrial laser scanning, airborne lidar, and GPS in natural hazards studies and mitigation; and Applications of airborne remote sensing techniques in geomorphology, climate/weather studies, hydrology, and tectonics. Please visit: ncalm.cive.uh.edu/gses/geosensing, for more information.

The application process and forms can be found on the Civil & Environmental Engineering website. Interested students can contact Dr. Craig Glennie at: clglennie [at] uh [dot] edu (subject: GSES%20Graduate%20Program%20Information) .

Deadline: February 1st, 2015

2015 Seed Proposal Submission Period Extended – Closed
November 3, 2015
The 2015 Seed Project proposal submission period has been extended until Friday, December 4, 2015! See the announcement below: The National Center for Airborne Laser Mapping, funded by the...
2015 Seed Proposal Submission Period Extended

The 2015 Seed Project proposal submission period has been extended until Friday, December 4, 2015! See the announcement below:

The National Center for Airborne Laser Mapping, funded by the National Science Foundation, invites proposals from graduate students seeking Airborne Laser Swath Mapping observations covering limited areas (no more than 40 km2) for use in research toward an M.S. or Ph.D. degree. Proposals must be submitted online. For background information and complete guidelines for submitting a proposal, please see the Seed Proposals and Format Guidelines pages. The deadline for proposal submission is December 4, 2015. For more information, contact ncalm [at] egr [dot] uh [dot] edu or call 832.842.8881.

NCALM Work Featured as Part of National Geographic Print Article
October 2, 2015
Author Douglas Preston and Photographer Dave Yoder have published an in depth article in National Geographic about the initial ground exploration of an area mapped by NCALM in the rain...
NCALM Work Featured as Part of National Geographic Print Article

Author Douglas Preston and Photographer Dave Yoder have published an in depth article in National Geographic about the initial ground exploration of an area mapped by NCALM in the rain forests of Mosquitia. Late last winter, NCALM's Juan Carlos Fernandez Diaz traveled to Honduras with Chris Fisher, Steve Elkins, and others to investigate an area seen recently to archaeologists only from the air and in lidar data. The expedition received much publicity in the months after. Read the article and see the photographs, along with additional information, on National Geographic's website.