Blue Marble Geographics

Global Mapper LiDAR Module


The Global Mapper LiDAR Module is an optional enhancement to the software that provides numerous advanced LiDAR processing tools, including automatic point cloud classification, feature extraction, cross-sectional viewing and editing, dramatically faster surface generation, and much more. At a fraction of the cost of comparable applications, it is a must-have for anyone using or managing terrestrial or airborne LiDAR as well as other point cloud datasets.

Additional functionality offered in the LiDAR Module includes:

  • A convenient LiDAR Toolbar for easy access to key editing and analysis functions
  • Multiple gridding options for faster DSM or DTM generation
  • Access to point cloud files containing a billion points or more
  • Automatic point classification tools that automatically distinguish building, ground, vegetation and power lines and above-ground utility cables in unclassified layers
  • Feature extraction functionality to automatically create 3D building footprints, trees and power lines
  • Cross-sectional rendering using Global Mapper's Path Profile tool for viewing and editing the point cloud in a vertical perspective
  • 3D Digitizing or custom feature extraction using the perpendicular profile function
  • Advanced filtering options to efficiently remove erroneous or unneeded points
  • Customizable detection and reclassification of noise points
  • LiDAR scripting commands for streamlining workflow
  • Point colorization from underlying imagery or gridded layer
  • A LiDAR QC tool for correcting point cloud elevations using ground control points
  • Multiple point cloud visualization options including by classification, intensity, elevation, RGB, and point density
  • Support for reporting LiDAR statistics
  • Support for importing and exporting most common LiDAR formats
  • Support for NIR (near-infrared) data

Automatic Reclassification Tool

The LiDAR Module was first released with Global Mapper v15 and a host of new LiDAR tools have since been added. Building on the existing functionality for identifying ground, building, and vegetation points in an unclassified point cloud, version 17 of the module, which was released in September 2015, includes a powerful new tool for detecting and automatically reclassifying above-ground utility lines. After customizing the reclassification parameters, such as minimum height above ground and linear offset threshold, the points representing power lines are automatically attributed with the Wire - Conductor ASPRS LIDAR class. Analysis of linear patterns in these reclassified points can subsequently be used to create 3D vector lines.

Effective Noise Removal

Addressing a major concern among LiDAR users, the latest release of the Global Mapper LiDAR Module provides an efficient and effective way to remove noise from point cloud data. This powerful filtering tool can reclassify or automatically delete any points that are beyond a prescribed elevation or height above ground threshold within a local area. Other enhancements to the module include dramatically faster data rendering and processing as well as updated filtering tools for selecting and, if necessary, removing points based on class, return intensity, color range, and many other parameters.

3D Extraction Tool

The module also offers a powerful new 3D feature extraction or digitizing tool. Utilizing the new perpendicular profiling function, a series of points can be placed in successive profile views resulting in the creation of 3D areas or line features. This provides a very easy way to digitize highly accurate 3D features from LiDAR or terrain data, such as road edge and curb lines, powerlines, and buildings.

LiDAR Quality Control

The LiDAR Module offers a tool for verifying the vertical accuracy of a point cloud. Using surveyed ground control points, the elevation values throughout the layer can be checked and adjusted if necessary.

Low-Cost LiDAR Processing

The enhanced LiDAR analysis and editing functionality in the Global Mapper LiDAR module is offered at a significantly lower price than similar applications. The cost of activating this module is on par with the cost of purchasing a copy of Global Mapper with flexible licensing options for available for network, enterprise, and academic use. For more information, contact

The Global Mapper LiDAR Module is embedded in the standard version of the software and is activated using an appropriate license file or order number. As with the full version of Global Mapper, the LiDAR Module can be activated on a trial basis by requesting a temporary license. Click here for instructions on how to activate the module.

New in v17

  • Added support for automatically classifying power lines and above-ground utility cables
  • Expanded feature extraction to include the creation of line features representing power lines
  • Added option to detect and reclassify or delete noise points
  • Dramatically sped up nearly all Lidar operations, including load and display. In some cases operations will be 10 times faster or even more
  • Updated the filter dialog for Lidar to allow filtering by intensity, height-above-ground, NDVI and NDWI (when available), and return type in addition to the filter settings that were already there
  • Improved the speed of calculation and display of filled gaps when doing a binned grid of Lidar points

New in v16.2

  • Added support for Lidar with NIR (near infrared) sensor data. The new functionality makes use of 4-band RGB+NIR LAS files
  • Added support for NIR (near-infrared) data for Lidar point clouds. This includes new draw modes for CIR (color infrared), NDVI, and NDWI display, export to new LAS files with the NIR channel included, improved automatic classification of high vegetation/buildings using NDVI/NDWI, and gridding the calculated NDVI and NDWI values for the NIR-enabled Lidar

New in v16.1

  • Numerous improvements to LiDAR Module analysis features such as automated building and vegetation classification, feature extraction, and building height calculations for more streamlined processing and improved output
  • New support for the ZFS (Zoller+Frohlich) LiDAR format

New in v16.0

  • The ability to automatically classify building and trees
  • Feature extraction to render building and trees
  • Filter LiDAR points by class, elevation, color, scan-angle and source-ID when exporting, gridding, and selecting from point clouds
  • Dramatically improved automatic classification of ground points
    • Improved classification to filter out likely buildings and trees and added parameters controls to the ground classify dialog
    • Faster automatic classification of ground points for machines with multiple cores
    • Perform automatic classification on just selected points to speed up processing
  • Support for filtering LiDAR LAS/LAZ when exporting, filter by elevation range, color, allowed classes, angle range, and/or within a list of point source IDs
  • Support for filtering LiDAR point clouds when gridding, filter by elevation range, color, allowed classes, angle range, and/or within a list of point source IDs
  • Support for gridding LiDAR intensity or height above ground values rather than elevation
  • Enhanced option to filter the selected LiDAR points with the Digitizer Tool as well as an added option to filter the selection by classification, point source ID, and scan angle range
  • Support for coloring LiDAR point clouds by the difference in return values
  • Added right-click option for the Line of Sight Function in the Path Profile Tool to set the corridor width
  • New scripting commands for automatically classifying building and high vegetation using the LIDAR_CLASSIFY script command

New in v15.2

  • Support for transforming (shift/rotate/scale) of LiDAR point clouds
  • New LIDAR_CLASSIFY script command for classifying ground points in a script

Keep the original file offset/scale or specify a new one when exporting to LiDAR LAS/LAZ files

  • Crop to a selected area when specifying the bounds to import from a LiDAR point cloud
  • Export point clouds to Esri File Geodatabases (GDB) as normal 3D point features

New in v15.1

  • Added additional selection option on path profile dialog with LiDAR points shown to select by drawing a polygon.
  • Added support for loading Leica PTS point cloud files.
  • Added option when batch converting to LiDAR LAS/LAZ files to apply color from loaded imagery.

New in v15

  • Introduction of the New LiDAR module with advanced LiDAR analysis functionality. The licensing is handled under a new Help menu option for working with module and feature extension licenses. Visit our purchasing page for more info.

The Global Mapper™ LiDAR Module is an optional purchase for those interested in advanced features such as automatic reclassification, Path Profile editing of LiDAR points and dramatically faster gridding. Users will leverage the LiDAR Module through the new LiDAR toolbar.

  • Manual Reclassification
  • Automatic Reclassification
  • LiDAR QC
  • Advanced LiDAR Filtering Options
  • Automatic Extraction of Buildings, Trees, and Powerlines
  • Custom 3D Digitizing and Feature Extraction
  • Colorize LiDAR Points
  • Dramatically Faster Gridding
  • Path Profile Editing
  • Additional File Format Support

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