LiDAR is an active remote sensing technique with a unique capability to capture three-dimensional information of the earth’s surface even in heavily vegetated areas, and it is proven to be useful in many research applications. Although it is becoming the remote sensing platform of choice for planning and natural resource agencies that require three-dimensional information, the enormous data that are generated and the lack of available software analysis packages make LiDAR still unavailable to a typical user of spatial data. LiDARHub is a free and open source platform for web-based management, visualization and analysis of LiDAR data that enables development of online tools for LiDAR data processing in a web browser. The framework provides a foundation to develop online tools for LiDAR data processing and tools can be shared. The framework is also flexible so that the developed tools can be easily ported to High Performance Computing (HPC) environments that speed up the computationally extensive LiDAR data processing. Two example LiDARHub tools are presented as case studies to demonstrate potential software development scenarios. The developed tools provide easy to use user interface and hide complex computation so that users can take advantage of the LiDAR technology with only a web browser. The LiDARHub allows not only the sharing of large volume of LiDAR data but also developing online LiDAR processing platform for a large audience.
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Jung, J., Pijanowski, B.C. LiDARHub: a free and open source software platform for web-based management, visualization and analysis of LiDAR data. Geosci J 19, 741–749 (2015). https://doi.org/10.1007/s12303-015-0003-8