Why use LiDAR in Ecology?

ECTS credits: 3 ECTS


Course parameters:
: English
Level of course
: PhD course
Time of year:
5-8 December 2017
No. of contact hours/hours in total incl. preparation: 40/40                                                                           
Capacity limits
: 15


Objectives of the course:
The objective of the course is to give the participants the tools and insight needed to get started with analyses of LiDAR data of relevance for answering their ecological questions. Topics covered will be

  • The physical basis and functioning of LIDAR systems
  • Basic processing tasks for terrain and vegetation modelling
  • LIDAR-based extraction of biophysical parameters
  • LIDAR-based classification of terrain and vegetation
  • Fusion of LIDAR with optical imagery
  • Case studies of LIDAR for Ecology
  • State of the Art in LIDAR systems and applications

Exercises will be focused on data from the 2015 and 2007 data which cover all of Denmark, but students are encouraged to bring data from their own study sites if available. The course will alternate between lectures, where the students are introduced to the different methods, and exercises, where the students will apply the methods to various image data sets. Hands-on practicals will be delivered using the OPALS software package. Test licenses will be provided


Learning outcomes and competences:
At the end of the course, the students should be able to:

  • Understand the basic principles of LIDAR and its applications in environmental science
  • Understand the principles of LIDAR data and change detection techniques
  • Be able to perform basic analyses and processing of LiDAR data
  • Be able to apply LIDAR data to specific ecological questions

Compulsory programme:
Preparation and active participation


Course contents:
Lectures and computer exercises. Students need to bring their own computers.




Course organiser:
Signe Normand (Aarhus University)


Name of lecturers:
András Zlinszky (Aarhus University)


Information on obligatory material to be read before the course will be send out at the latest 14 days before the course start.

Course assessment:
Active participation


Ecoinformatics and Biodiversity, Department of Bioscience, Aarhus University


9 am – 5 pm each day


Building 1540 room 324, Ecoinformatics and Biodiversity, Ny Munkegade 114, 8000 Aarhus C


Deadline for registration is 15 November.

PhD students from Science and Technology at Aarhus University have preference.

If you have any questions, please contact Signe Normand e-mail: signe.normand@bios.au.dk

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