3-D Discontinuity Orientations using Combined Optical Imaging and LiDAR Techniques


The importance of the collection and analysis of data on discontinuities cannot be overemphasized. Problems which in clude sampling difficulties, risks, limited access to rock faces and exposures, and the delay in data collection has led to a high need for data collection tools and analysis techniques that can overcome these problems. Great developments have been made towards automated measurements using both optical imaging and LiDAR scanning methods but there is still more room for improvement. Discontinuities manifest themselves as 'facets' that can be measured by LiDAR or fracture 'traces' that can be measured from optical imaging methods. LiDAR scanning alone cannot measure 'traces' neither can optical imaging methods measure 'facets'. This is complicated by the fact that both 'facets' and 'traces' are often present in the same rock cut, making the selection of an appropriate measuring tool very difficult if not impossible. In this paper, we present our research on the development of robust software to determine 3-D discontinuity orientations from combined LiDAR and optical imaging techniques.

Meeting Name

45th US Rock Mechanics / Geomechanics Symposium (2011: Jun. 26-19, San Francisco, CA)


Geosciences and Geological and Petroleum Engineering

Keywords and Phrases

Analysis of Data; Analysis Techniques; Automated Measurement; Data Collection Tools; Lidar Scanning; Measuring Tools; Optical Imaging Method; Optical Imaging Technique; Robust Software; Rock Cut; Optical Image Storage; Optical Radar; Rock Mechanics; Three Dimensional; Data Acquisition

Document Type

Article - Conference proceedings

Document Version


File Type





© 2011 American Rock Mechanics Association (ARMA), All rights reserved.

Publication Date

01 Jun 2011