LIDAR Data Exchange File
3.3 | 25 Votes
What is a LAS file?
A LAS file contains Light Detection and Ranging (LIDAR) data that was collected by optical remote sensors. The data is saved in a standard format developed by the American Society for Photogrammetry and Remote Sensing (ASPRS). American military and scientific agencies use LAS files to share LIDAR data with each other.
Scientists use LIDAR to map the surface of the Earth and record surface characteristics. They then use this data to create maps and models of recorded areas.
In response to the proliferation of proprietary LIDAR-related file formats, the ASPRS developed the LAS format. LAS is meant to be a standard format that American agencies, such as NOAA and the U.S. Coast Guard, can use to save and exchange data with each other, regardless of how that data was captured.
How to open a LAS file
You can use LASUtility (Windows), ESRI ArcGIS Pro (Windows), or Blaze3D (Windows, Linux) to open a LAS file and view the data it contains. Note that different programs may provide different options for viewing the data a LAS file contains.