Abstract

A laser transit is a surveying instrument that projects a pulsing laser beam at a point of interest and calculates the three-dimensional coordinates of the point from the reflection. We tested the laser transit on a rock slope and compared the results with a photogrammetric survey. The case study showed that laser technology is a fast and accurate technique to quantify topography with a range of 350 m and an accuracy of 10 cm. The three-dimensional model of the topography can be printed in real time and can serve as basis for geological mapping and determination of bed thicknesses, dips, and other structural elements of the rock. We foresee applications in seismic modeling of outcrops and studies of sediment anatomy and structural geology.

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