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2002 NASA/USGS Airborne LiDAR Assessment of Coastal Erosion (ALACE) Project for California, Oregon, and Washington Coastlines
Laser beach mapping uses a pulsed laser ranging system mounted onboard an aircraft to measure ground elevation and coastal topography. The laser emits laser beams at high frequency and is directed downward at the earth’s surface through a port opening in the bottom of the aircraft’s fuselage. The laser system records the time difference between emission of the laser beam and the reception of the reflected laser signal in the aircraft. The aircraft travels over the beach at approximately 60 meters per second while surveying from the low water line to the landward base of the sand dunes.