In large scale earth observation systems, data is gathered in short duration surveys returning massive numbers of point data observations (often millions) covering significantly sized regions. To maintain up-to-date products (e.g. navigation charts in harbours with continuous silt build-up), successive surveys are performed that often cover overlapping areas. Searches to find all the data in a specific region are expected to return only the most recent data in any given area, and must ignore any older, overlapping versions.
Manufacturers’ specifications for laser data acquisition have been used since the inception of the technology over a decade ago [Habib et. al., 2008; Ussyshkin et. al, 2006]. However, unbiased geostatistical analysis would be valuable in determining - in a pre-analysis stage - whether or not user-demanded specifications for project-specific mapping applications can be met or exceeded by the manufacturer’s standards.
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