Performance Evaluation of the Velodyne VLP-16 System for Feature-Surface Surveying

TitlePerformance Evaluation of the Velodyne VLP-16 System for Feature-Surface Surveying
Publication TypeConference Abstract
AuthorsKidd, J, Pe'eri, S, Eren, F, Armstrong, AA
Conference Name2016 Canadian Hydrographic Conference
Conference DatesMay 16 - 19
Keywordsfeature-surface surveying, industrial laser scanner, velodyne, vlp-16

Previous work, conducted between the Center for Coastal and Ocean Mapping and HYPACK, demonstrated the potential use of a low-cost industrial laser scanner as an alternative for survey-grade laser scanners for mapping of surface features such as piers, piles and rocks. In this paper, an in-depth performance evaluation that is currently being conducted using the Velodyne VLP-16 system will be discussed. This industrial laser scanner, which currently costs $8,000, uses 16 laser beams that cover a vertical field of view of ± 15°. These laser/detector pairs also rotate at an adjustable rate from 5 Hz to 20 Hz to cover a horizontal field of view of

360°. Although it is possible to output geo-referenced measurements with information such as position, azimuth and angle, range and intensity, the accuracy of these measurements is not clear. Based on a total propagation uncertainty model developed for laser scanner surveying which incorporates auxiliary systems (i.e., GPS and IMU), the dependency of the laser measurements on different survey conditions was evaluated through experiments conducted in laboratory and field conditions. The study results show the changes in range estimation as a function of distance, angle of incidence and surface roughness.