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Light Detection and Ranging (LiDAR) is a remote sensing technology that measures scattered light (laser) to find information and range of a distant target. LiDAR is comparable to radar in certain aspects. However, LiDAR uses waves of shorter wavelengths unlike radar, which uses radio waves for measuring targets. The wavelengths of the electronic spectrum for LiDAR technology typically lie in the visible, ultraviolet and infrared range. The LiDAR technology enables direct measurement of 3D structures and underlying terrain with high resolution and high data accuracy. The two major types of LiDAR include Airborne LiDAR which includes topographic and bathymetric LiDAR and Terrestrial LiDAR that includes mobile LiDAR and short range LiDAR.
The growing demand for 3D imagery in various end use sectors such as construction, power transmission, transportation and defense and aerospace is the major factor driving the LiDAR market globally. Further, the LiDAR technology offers extensive time and cost saving capabilities which have increased the likes of its adoption and thus, the technology is preferred over traditional mapping methods. The LiDAR technology has replaced photogrammetry mainly because of its comparative advantages over photogrammetry in terms of light independency and high accuracy. On the contrary, complexity in LiDAR data interpretation due to lack of standardization is one of the major factors challenging the market growth.
Coastal applications of LiDAR dominated the market in 2013 whereas transmission lines segment is expected to experience fastest growth over the forecast period. The major use of LiDAR in coastal applications is for disaster management and control in disaster prone coastal areas. The adoption of LiDAR technology in the power sector is increasing as power utilities are increasing incorporating LiDAR technology in laying out and setting up transmission lines. The adoption of LiDAR is also expected to increase in transportation, infrastructure and defense and aerospace end user segments.
Geographically, North America dominated the global LiDAR market. The growth in this region is attributed to high research and development spending on bringing innovations in the LiDAR technology and high penetration in defense and military due to support from the government. Europe closely follows North America and a large number of key players are supporting the growth in order to meet the demand of huge consumer base in this region. Other regions such as Asia Pacific and RoW are expected to experience significant growth over the forecast period.
Major industry participants in the LiDAR market are 3D Laser Mapping Ltd., Aerometric Inc., Avent Lidar Technology, Airborne Hydrography AB, DigitalWorld Mapping Inc., Firmatek 3D Mapping Solutions LLC, FARO Technology, Inc., Intermap Technologies Corp., Leica Geosystems AG, Mosaic 3D, Optech Incorporated and RIEGL Laser Measurement Systems GmbH among others. The key strategy adopted by majority of these players to strengthen and expand their presence in the global LiDAR market is new product development through technological innovations and product enhancements.

Adoption across Varied Applications to Propel Growth of LiDAR Market between 2014 and 2020

The LiDAR market is expected to bring extensive growth opportunities during the assessment period of 2014-2020. The emergence of novel technologies and advancements in LiDAR may bring tremendous growth opportunities for the LiDAR market across the forecast period of 2014-2020. The escalating demand for 3D imagery in numerous sectors such as transportation, defense, aerospace, construction, power transmission, and others may bring good growth prospects for the LiDAR market.

  • LiDAR stations are useful in monitoring various types of weather changes. These stations play a crucial role in environmental monitoring. Thus, all these factors bring immense growth opportunities for the LiDAR market. LiDAR is the abbreviation for light detection and ranging. It is a remote sensing method. LiDAR makes use of pulsed laser for calculating an object’s variable distances from the earth’s surface. Thus, the growing use of such technologies may encourage the growth of the LiDAR market considerably.
  • Automotive companies are investing heavily in LiDAR technologies. The advent of self-drive technologies across the globe may bring profitable growth opportunities for the LiDAR market. LiDAR technology is used extensively in these cars. The heightening sales in the automotive sector will further enhance the growth prospects of the LiDAR market to a great extent.
  • The novel coronavirus outbreak has led to substantial loss. Many businesses and sectors have bore the brunt of the pandemic. The LiDAR market is one of them. The restrictions imposed on businesses and other activities on the grounds of the SARS-CoV-2 outbreak have resulted in great loss to the LiDAR market.
  • The closure of manufacturing facilities and production units had a large negative impact on the growth of the LiDAR market. The demand for LiDAR technologies was also low due to the decrease in production across end-users. Thus, all these factors may restrain the growth of the LiDAR market.

Global LiDAR Market: Overview

Light detection and ranging (LiDAR) is an active, remote sensing technology that basically uses pulsed laser beams to measure variable distances to the earth, reliably and accurately. When used with any remote sensing airborne system, the distance mapping technology can generate three-dimensional (3D)-information about the shape of the earth and determine various characteristics of its surface such as pressure, temperature, and humidity. LiDAR systems are popularly used in by researchers and mapping professionals for environmental research and enable those in getting 3D structures of the manmade as well natural environments with marked accuracy. Compared to passive sensing technology, there is widespread demand for this remote sensing technology in numerous application in various end-use industries. In the coming years, many more exciting applications of LiDAR as geographic information system are expected to emerge providing simplified interpretation of 3D imagery data.

LiDAR systems are used in making digital elevation models to be used in emergency response operations, notably in disaster-prone coastal areas. Two broad types of LiDAR technologies used are topographic and bathymetric, and typically uses near-infrared laser and green laser light respectively. The report on the global LiDAR market offers in-depth assessment of key growth dynamics and challenges, major technological advancements, notable trends and emerging opportunities, share and size of prominent segments, and the competitive landscape.

The global LiDAR market is projected to rise at an impressive CAGR of 15.0% CAGR from 2014 to 2020, and is anticipated to touch a valuation of US$605.5 million by the end of 2020.

Global LiDAR Market: Trends and Opportunities

The growing demand for obtaining precise and flexible 3D imagery in various end-use sectors such as power transmission, construction, defense and aerospace, and transportation, is a key factor driving the global LiDAR market. Several benefits contribute to the attractiveness of the LiDAR- based sensing systems. Compared to photogrammetry and other passive sensing technology, their use is driven by the potential to offer high spatial and flexible resolution of the measurements. In addition, they use in providing atmosphere characteristics at ambient environmental conditions is contributing to the demand for these systems. A growing number of coastal applications of LiDAR is accentuating the growth of the market.

In recent years, LiDAR mapping systems are increasingly being used in power sectors for modern remote sensing methods power grid construction, laying up transmission lines, and their effective management. An emerging number of applications in transportation, aerospace, and infrastructure sectors is anticipated to boost the market over the forecast period.  Furthermore, substantial support from governments in various developing and developed countries to adopt advanced remote sensing technology the defense is a notable factor boosting the market. Advancements in software management used in LiDAR systems and the continued efforts of players in standardizing the data efforts are prominent trends expected to open lucrative prospects in the market in the coming years.

Global LiDAR Market: Regional Outlook

Regionally, North America accounted for the leading market share in the global market in 2013. The dominance of the regional market can be attributed to the widespread application of LiDAR in modern remote sensing applications used in the defense and aerospace sector. Europe currently trails this regional market. However, this regional market is expected to rise at a prominent pace and is predicted to outdo all others. The growth is fueled by the marked presence of some prominent players and a burgeoning consumer base in key economies of the region. Meanwhile. Asia Pacific is projected to offer promising avenues for market players in the coming years.

Companies mentioned in the report

Some of the top players operating in the global LiDAR market include RIEGL Laser Measurement Systems GmbH., Optech Incorporated, Avent Lidar Technology, Intermap Technologies Corp., Aerometric Inc., Aero-Metric, Inc., Firmatek 3D Mapping Solutions LLC, Leica Geosystems AG, Airborne Hydrography AB, Mosaic 3D, 3D Laser Mapping Ltd., FARO Technologies Inc., and DigitalWorld Mapping Inc.

The global LiDAR market can be segmented based into:

Product Type:

  • Airborne LiDAR
  • Terrestrial LiDAR


  • Coastal
  • Forestry
  • Transportation
  • Infrastructure
  • Defense and Aerospace
  • Transmission lines
  • Flood Mapping
  • Mining
  • Hydrography


  • North America
  • Asia Pacific
  • Europe
  • Rest of the World

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