Follow us:

The Today File

Your guide to the latest news from around the Northwest

April 2, 2014 at 5:53 PM

New aerial map shows Oso slide in a different light

New aerial images of the Oso landslide show the topography of the debris field in unprecedented detail.

The images were commissioned by the Washington State Department of Transportation and are based on a laser-surveying technique called lidar — light detection and ranging. In the survey, a plane equipped with a laser scanner flew over the area, firing thousands of light pulses per second. The system builds a three-dimensional map of the surface based on how long it takes those pulses to bounce back.

Sophisticated software weeds out signals that bounce off trees and structures, essentially peeling away the vegetation to reveal the terrain below. Elevations in lidar maps are accurate to within a few inches.

State and federal geologists are analyzing the image to calculate the volume of the slide and as a baseline to compare to future images to detect any ground motion or deformation.

A zoomable version is available here.

Lidar image of Oso slide

This image, created through a laser scanning technique called lidar, shows the area of the Oso landslide with all the vegetation stripped away. Photo from the Washington State Department of Transportation.

 

Comments | More in Environment, General news | Topics: image, lidar, map

COMMENTS

No personal attacks or insults, no hate speech, no profanity. Please keep the conversation civil and help us moderate this thread by reporting any abuse. See our Commenting FAQ.



The opinions expressed in reader comments are those of the author only, and do not reflect the opinions of The Seattle Times.


Advertising
The Seattle Times

The door is closed, but it's not locked.

Take a minute to subscribe and continue to enjoy The Seattle Times for as little as 99 cents a week.

Subscription options ►

Already a subscriber?

We've got good news for you. Unlimited seattletimes.com content access is included with most subscriptions.

Subscriber login ►
The Seattle Times

To keep reading, you need a subscription upgrade.

We hope you have enjoyed your complimentary access. For unlimited seattletimes.com access, please upgrade your digital subscription.

Call customer service at 1.800.542.0820 for assistance with your upgrade or questions about your subscriber status.

The Seattle Times

To keep reading, you need a subscription.

We hope you have enjoyed your complimentary access. Subscribe now for unlimited access!

Subscription options ►

Already a subscriber?

We've got good news for you. Unlimited seattletimes.com content access is included with most subscriptions.

Activate Subscriber Account ►