Woolpert Acquires Leica ALS80 Lidar Systems for Expanded Acquisition Capacity

Woolpert today announced it has acquired three new Leica ALS80 Airborne Laser Scanners. The addition of the industry-leading lidar systems allows the national architecture, engineering and geospatial firm to further expand its aerial data collection services.

“The ALS80s are each 25 percent more efficient in our applications than the ALS70s that they’re replacing, plus we are adding a third system,” said Jeff Lovin, Woolpert senior vice president and director of government solutions. “In effect, we’ve more than doubled our aerial lidar collection capacity.”

Lovin said this additional capacity is needed to support Woolpert’s many statewide mapping programs, as well as the U.S. Geological Survey’s (USGS) 3D Elevation Program (3DEP).

Lidar, which stands for “light detection and ranging,” measures ranges and variable distances to the Earth via pulsed laser light.

“Woolpert is looked at as a pioneer and a leader in lidar, and this continued investment allows us to maintain that position,” Lovin said. “Any 3D mapping we do includes lidar.”

Kirk McClurkin, Woolpert vice president and director of geospatial solutions and information technology, said the application of the Leica ALS80s will extend to multiple markets within the firm.

“These systems will support large-area data collects, as well as urban planning on smaller scales, to support the federal and civil government, transportation, water and energy industries,” McClurkin said. “We have an extensive fleet of pilots and operators that can handle emergency and non-emergency needs—from Hurricane Sandy and South Carolina flooding imagery collections to any range of client requests. This acquisition expands what we can do in all markets.”

McClurkin said Leica Geosystems, which is part of Hexagon, has been a great partner to Woolpert, and Lovin added that the companies have worked together since the days of film cameras in the 1980s.

“Woolpert has a reputation for delivering outstanding quality and service to their clients,” said Jean Gardiner, vice president of Hexagon Geosystems’ Geospatial Solutions Division in North America. “We are excited to see them take their capabilities to the next level with the new Leica ALS80 systems and look forward to supporting them as they expand their business.”

Woolpert, which is headquartered in Dayton, Ohio, continues to expand its aerial mapping services from unmanned aerial systems (UAS) to lidar collections to satellite imagery.

“We always have the best tools,” McClurkin said. “We make sure we’re prepared to do whatever the client needs us to do.”