Last two weeks our LiDAR-UAV was one of the stars of the National Geographic documentary ‘Burried Secrets of WWII’. Normally our LiDAR-UAV is used for applications related to agriculture, forestry or habitat monitoring. In that case we are measuring the 3D structure of trees or crops. However, for the case of the documentary, we used our LiDAR system to prepare a 3D surface of the terrain below a forested area in Germany. In this case searching for remnants of bunkers, trenches and manholes.
The actual movie material was already acquired last winter in the Hurtgenwald in Germany, where the German army and the allied forces fought one of their last battles on the Western front. Pilot Harm Bartholomeus and technician Marcello Novani joint the film crew there and provided them with 3D datasets of the larger forested area. The documentary shows how innovative techniques like LiDAR can be used to reconstruct the landscape in order to get a better understanding how this battle was fought.
This example shows very nicely that LiDAR-UAV systems can be adopted for applications related to archaeology where detailed 3D information of the terrain or for old buildings or structures is required.