Minnesota LiDAR Training Resources

The Technology

LiDAR or Light Detection and Ranging is an essential tool in measuring distances and providing elevation data for contour mapping and 3D imaging. This remote sensing technology collects data by airplane, using reflected laser light beams to assess elevations.



Photo credits: United States Geological Survey (USGS)

The Resource

The Water Resources Center of the University of Minnesota provides useful and free online training modules that assists users in LiDAR data and conservation applications. These videos on the basics of LiDAR are targeted at people with a fundamental background in ArcGIS software. The University of Minnesota also offers LiDAR Training for several modules in conservation applications, with examples available for viewing through these 5-min videos on how-to use LiDAR data within ArcGIS.

LiDAR - Light Detection and Ranging

Photo credit: Ann Lewandowski, University of Minnesota

Examples of University of Minnesota LiDAR How-To’s:

  1. 101 Basics of Using LiDAR Data (Prerequisite: Intermediate skill with ArcGIS)
  2. Terrain analysis (Prerequisite: Basics of Using LiDAR Data)
  3. Hydrologic applications (Prerequisite: Basics of Using LiDAR Data)
  4. Engineering applications (Prerequisite: Basics of Using LiDAR Data)
  5. Forestry and ecological applications (Prerequisite: Basics of Using LiDAR Data)
  6. Wetland mapping (Prerequisite: Basics of Using LiDAR Data)

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About the author

Amanda Murby

Amanda is a Ph.D. candidate with the Department of Biological Sciences at the University of New Hampshire. She is involved in several collaborative research projects focused on monitoring toxic cyanobacteria in water, air and within food webs. More info